[Gllug] Controversial Joel Spolsky article
bap at shrdlu.com
Mon Dec 22 13:06:34 UTC 2003
In message <20031221113703.GA12544 at phaistos.bruce>, Bruce Richardson
<itsbruce at uklinux.net> writes
>The author has a good point, in that traditional packaging schemes don't
>allow for user-installed software. Users on *nix systems have
>traditionally simply unrolled tarballs into their own ~/src directories,
>compiled them and installed them into their own ~/bin directories. A
>packaging system that addresses the same needs would be interesting.
>Beyond that, however, his argument is specious. The most misleading
>part of it is the title, "Zero Install". This is intended to imply no
>installation overhead, no administration overhead and that is simply not
>true. The admin tasks have simply been moved from the sysadmin to the
That's partly what I was getting at. The traditional sysadmin has
already disappeared from most computer sites, because most sites are now
a single home user with a single PC. The jobs that were done by
sysadmins are either done by the user, or don't get done at all.
Perhaps its a question of terminology. The way I see it if the job has
been de-skilled so much as to be almost unrecognisable should it still
be called sysadmin? If not then every PC owner is a sysadmin. They
manage a cold-boot of the system every day, and quite a lot of them
handle backups too. Both of those were once sysadmin jobs.
I remember hearing of a program called The Last One that claimed to have
made programmers obsolete. I didn't believe those claims any more than I
believe claims that sysadmins aren't needed any more. But it is
definitely true that a lot of programming is now done by people who
aren't programmers and a lot of systems administration is done by people
who aren't sysadmins.
London, UK. DBA, Manager, Trainer & Author. Will work for money.
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