Nomenclature, Geekiness and Ease of Use
I bought a Commodore 64 computer, new, in 1984. Since then I have had a Kaypro (CP/M OS), an PC from DOS 3.3 to Win95, 98 and lastly 7. I switched to Ubuntu in 2006 and dropped Win7 last year. What I am saying here is that I have been around computers for a while. As an end user. Word processing, video games, no programming. I know the lingo. DB-25, Serial Port, Parallel Port, dram, cpu, etc.
Yesterday, a cassette player arrived from eBay. It has USB connectivity. It shipped with a small CD of Audacity. I had Audacity already installed on this 'puter. I didn't use the CD version.
I read the cassette instructions: Open Audacity, Select Edit, Open Preferences, Select USB Audio Device, set Channels to (2) Stereo. It worked flawlessly yesterday. Today, same procedure. But now Audacity has no named (nomenclature) USB Audio, like it did yesterday. Now, having selected each and every USB device available, no selection will allow for 2 channel stereo, like yesterday. No software has been changed, no fiddling with settings or configs of Sound. Are you still with me? I'm getting to the point.
The Alsa? (I cannot tell, the Panel Icon Loudspeaker opens but never says what it's using, e.g., Alsa, Pulse, something else?) and under the Input tab, the only device with "stereo" is: iec958-stereo-input. I selected it. Then I went back to Audacity, Edit, Preferencesevices -- Recording - Device: and tried to find iec-958-stereo-input, but had no luck. This seems to me to be a nomenclature issue. Yes, different developers, but for cryin' out loud folks. This is but one example of this problem I have had with Ubuntu since 2006.
This nomenclature issue is little understood and not well addressed anywhere in any OS. For example: Microsoft's useless word: "Explorer". Used for a browser and a file manager. In Linux, GIMP may be useful, but PhotoLinux or PhotoBuntu is more poetic and describes a function. Yes, I would grok the argument that the name is stuck there. Same for GRUB. When I talk to my OS/MAC friends, they always smirk when I have to explain Grand Unified Boot Loader to them.
All the foregoing should be seen as philosophy, please.
AMD Athlon II X4 620, 4gig ddr2-800, m/b MSI K9N6PGM2, 1T SATA, EVGA 9500GT, Brother MFC-240C prntr, LG DVD-rom GSA-H55N