Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Choosing vs. Deciding: Which is the real pain?

Googling for "Pain" (don't ask!), I tripped over this funny picture:

The green guy seems to have grasped the "Tell, Don't Ask"-Principle, which can be applied in a much broader context than just programming.

But often the situation is the other way round:

Blue Guy: "Just tell me what you want."
Green Guy: "Cant't you just give me a list to choose from?"
(Zapping TV-channels, anyone?)

A person I worked with once said: "Usually the customer has to be forced to his happiness!"

The next step leads into the realm of manipulation: Forcing the other side while giving the impression of leaving a choice... but that's a dangerous dance on the edge between a win-win-situation and a psychological warfare.

PS: Do not confuse the "Tell, Don't Ask"-Principle with the "Don't Tell, Don't Ask"-Policy ...

PPS: I thought about naming this post "Heading for Madness, Part 1.5"...


  1. Guess I'm almoust expected to comment the pps ;-)
    Imho, it is not mad enough for "Heading for madness". And what comes next? "Heading for madness - Part 1.9", then Part 1.99? Be brave and finally write Part 2!

  2. Sandra: Yup, the PPS was a provocation in your direction...
    Thanks for the comment.


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