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Re^4: Not Again ... *sighs*

by BrowserUk (Pope)
on Sep 27, 2004 at 05:54 UTC ( #394078=note: print w/replies, xml ) Need Help??


in reply to Re^3: Not Again ... *sighs*
in thread Abigail-II and some thoughts

Our loss.

I totally agree. Our loss indeed; but it does make me wonder how our calling him on his impolitness is enough to drive him off?

It's okay for him to barate people for asking "dumb questions" or reaching "wrong conclusions", but not okay for us to question that?

Seems to me that if you can't take the heat, you stay out of the kitchen. Not only does being impolite take more effort than being polite; it invites a certain reaction that is both predictable and contextually warrented.

No amount of genius, seniority, name recognition nor earning power on behalf of an attacker removes the right of the attacked to a defense.

I have had a tendancy to tilt at windmills all my life, but I've found a quitely spoken statement of fact infinitely more effective than shouting, or being rude.


Examine what is said, not who speaks.
"Efficiency is intelligent laziness." -David Dunham
"Think for yourself!" - Abigail
"Memory, processor, disk in that order on the hardware side. Algorithm, algorithm, algorithm on the code side." - tachyon

Replies are listed 'Best First'.
On Being Polite
by merlyn (Sage) on Oct 01, 2004 at 11:13 UTC
    Not only does being impolite take more effort than being polite;
    You know, you keep saying that like you believe it. It's not true in my experience. In my experience, it takes more work to not only come up with something that works to contribute to the situation, but also figure out how to say it that won't immediately put the person off because I'm correcting them. I have to take into account their likely emotional state, and their likely resulting emotional state (making a lot of guesses along the way), and even then I could be mistaken.

    In what universe is that less work, rather than more? How are you continually making your claim without simply doing the math here?

    Presuming someone claimed "1 + 1 = 3", which of these two statements takes longer to construct:

    • No, one plus one is two.
    • Well, that may have been the way you heard it, or were taught, but let me assure you that your conclusion really isn't the case. If you examine the items "one" and "one", and put them together, say, as marks on a chalkboard, you'll find that "one" plus "one" is merely "two", not "three".
    Are you actually trying to claim that the latter is always easier than the former? C'mon. Get real.

    I'm happy to put the extra effort in to "be polite" when the path is obvious to me and I have the extra time. But when my time is limited, I'm going to yell "get your hand off the stove, now!", and not worry about how to phrase that so as not to damage their ego. I'd rather make a difference than be well liked (as I've said once or twice before, in here).

    -- Randal L. Schwartz, Perl hacker
    Be sure to read my standard disclaimer if this is a reply.

      I pondered how to respond to this. Firstly, your examples are not particularly well chosen--except maybe to support your point.

      Firstly, the example of "1 + 1 = 3" is so clearly erroneous--real life examples are usually much less clear cut.

      But more to the point. There is nothing impolite about "No, one plus one is two."--therefore it is perfectly polite.

      The second example, exaggerated for effect I know, is not what I would advocate. In fact, I would read that as condesending?

      I thought about posting a few more choice examples (from my persepctive) of the sort of things that you have said in the past. Indeed, I did start plowing through your 4500+ nodes (in reverse reputation order of course:), and picking out those where instead of a simple "No, that's not right." or "No, that's not right because ...", you had chosen to post something along the lines of: <pseudo>

      NO! NO! NO! {sigh} Look's like another bad meme I'm going to have stamp down on. Every time this subject comes up, along comes some fool and offers this idiotic piece of cargo-cult code as a solution

      That isn't a real example. It's more a composite of bits of several that I turned up in the first couple of hundred posts I read. I don't want to post real links, (though I can supply a few I noted via /msg if you want them) as it serves no purpose to re-hash old ground.

      I have to say that beyond learning a couple of new things about Perl, going through those of your posts I did, I think you do get a "bad rap" when it comes to this. I expected to find many more examples than I did. Mostly, I think because I have aquired the feeling that you are a greater offender in this regard than most.

      I now think that this impression is probably because as you are a "headline" monk, any transgression on your behalf tends to get inflated out of proportion.

      FWIW, I still read everything you write here, and most of what you link to from here. And I can attribute a great deal of whatever little I do know about Perl directly or indirectly to those writings.

      As always, I don't agree with some of what you write, but those are mostly matters of opinion rather than those of fact. I'm pretty sure the feeling is mutual:)


      Examine what is said, not who speaks.
      "Efficiency is intelligent laziness." -David Dunham
      "Think for yourself!" - Abigail
      "Memory, processor, disk in that order on the hardware side. Algorithm, algorithm, algorithm on the code side." - tachyon
        I have to say that beyond learning a couple of new things about Perl, going through those of your posts I did, I think you do get a "bad rap" when it comes to this. I expected to find many more examples than I did. Mostly, I think because I have aquired the feeling that you are a greater offender in this regard than most.

        I now think that this impression is probably because as you are a "headline" monk, any transgression on your behalf tends to get inflated out of proportion.

        Thank you! Thank you for doing that and reporting your findings. You're the second (third?) person who has done that, with similar results.

        I could only wish that more of my detractors actually examine the record, which is very public. I'll stand behind my record. Yes, there are moments when I spew crap. But the ratio of non-crap to crap might surprise a few people here. {grin}

        -- Randal L. Schwartz, Perl hacker
        Be sure to read my standard disclaimer if this is a reply.

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