Obscurity Wiki

πŸ’‘ Minimum Viable Interface

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πŸ“ UI Design Language

I was messing around a little bit with Plan9 when it occured to me. What's the absolute minimum interface required to use a computer without internet but with an artificial mind in there?

Maybe this is the way...

Imagine an OS where there's nothing but just a kernel, a compiler and a few other essential tools. Now imagine that instead of your normal terminal you have essentially a chat where you can send messages to an artificial mind who's living in this computer.

How would interacting with the computer look like?

you: Hello

os: Hi

you: show me cpu usage

os: Here you go

 |  |  ____
 |  |  |  |
 |  |  |  |
  C1    C2

you: whats this node instance for?

You get the idea. It wouldn't necessarily replace your shell. Think of this chat as a chat with an expert who knows exactly what's going on with the computer. Someone who's remotely controlling it, helping you do what you want.

you: open up a text editor

os: sure

you: setup a folder for a new C project

os: is there anything specific you need in it?

you: no, just a blank template is fine

os: ok

this would give you a new space where you can interact with the template etc.

Sometimes it's easier to get a specific type of interface that you're used to without relying on telling the computer to give you that.