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Programming Under the Wizard's Spell

Essay by   •  August 26, 2010  •  Essay  •  639 Words (3 Pages)  •  1,935 Views

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The computer is a tool that has become indispensable to the modern family and company. In flourishing so successfully the computer has passed from incredibly complex and unusable to anyone how was not well versed in its intricacies, to consumer oriented and user-friendly. In Ellen Ullman's essay, Programming Under The Wizard's Spell, she attempts to convince to reader that the computer has been over simplified to the point of no return. The simplification of the computer made it more user-friendly and there for more appealing to customers, this only blinded people into using the computer the way corporate America wanted them to, using without understanding.

First, this essay is a hybrid, it is a mix of the expository and comparison and contrast essay. In the first part she attempts to examine the differences between various Microsoft operating systems and the Unix operating system. Then the author tries to answer the question ''What is it ?'' and ''What is it not ?'' in paragraphs 3, Ullman states : ''Unix always presumes that you know what you're doing.'' and in referring to Microsoft she states it as: "Consumer-oriented, idiot-proofed, covered by its pretty skin of icons and dialog boxes [...]". She has tactfully drawn the boundaries between the two products which start to take one the appearance of the good and the corporate induced bad. Ullman has now inferred her goal, she wishes to convince the reader of her convictions of the new computerised corporate America. Also, she uses simple wording, narration and a somewhat comic anecdote of her experiences, effectively leading the reader into drawing negative conclusions about the new consumer oriented computer. She does not truly attempt to be objective but gives that illusion by shortly stating in the first paragraph: ''a reasonable, professional choice in a world where Microsoft platforms are everywhere''. This was a reasonably good statement that inspires in the reader to believe that Ellen Ullman is waying the good and the bad.

Further more, once finished, the reader can only conclude that there where so many more bad things than good things about Microsoft that it most likely a bad product hinged on reducing our computing freedom. This conclusion is of course the only one possible to anyone how reads the essay. she made it this way but without actually



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