Friday, August 22, 2008

Acme SAC

Acme SAC. A programmer's editor, shell and user interface expressly designed to make you feel less intelligent than you thought you were.


I skimmed Acme: A User Interface for Programers. Unix terminal windows are really teletypes and are an archaic way of talking to a computer - no argument there. Gotta be a better way - preach it! Basic concepts, explanations, check.


I fire it up at work. Hmm - it needs a proxy to communicate outside the corporate firewall - half the demos and 'isn't this nifty' stuff in the readme are elsewhere! And where do I set a proxy up at? Okay, wait till I get home, then. It comes with a shell - awesome. Or not so much - the shell seems to live in it's own weird little world and I can't get to my files to see them. No wonder when I open a new window with a valid path it tells me I'm full of poo. And so on.

And the point of an editor, shell and so on that won't let me at the files I already have are what?

I can't tell if what I'm looking at is a learning curve that looks like a sheer wall ninety miles high or some kind of practical joke played on an unsuspecting world by minanthropic computer nerds from AT&T.


A long, long time ago I joined the Marines. I was introduced to what was then the brand new M16A2. Guys in the fleet were running around with clapped out 'A1s and we got weapons right .. out .. of .. the box.

The training material was geared to teaching guys who had been shooting the 'A1 about the new and improved A2. Half the introductory material was going on about the differences. They were selling the weapon.

m16A1 by chadsarmory.
If it's Mattel, it's swell.

I didn't need to be sold. I didn't care that a weapon I'd only seen on TV had feature X and was replaced by feature Y and why it was so much better. Just teach me how to shoot the weapon I've got, and stop wasting my time with bullshit.

Eyes on the Horizon by Honor Revealed.
A better rifle. And a better looking rifle.

As the M16A2 training material, so Acme SAC.

What I need are not reams of theory and endless mailing lists of smug hyper-smart computer guys running vast arrays of Plan 9 and Inferno networks giving me a long back story on why this is the greatest thing since sliced cheese. I don't want to learn how to tear the motor apart - maybe later, but not now.

Now, I want to get in and drive. How to find the friggin' files I was working on pre Acme SAC. How do I get it to talk through a proxy. Can I use it to SSH to another system - 'cause I think that would be pretty nity. Can it be a better editor than TextMate?

Just a tutorial that is designed with your average ordinary guy, is all I'm looking for.

cute puppy

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