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future software directions

Jerry Learn learn at SMAUG.UCR.EDU
Thu Feb 18 16:11:15 EST 1993

Steve Thompson sez:
> Hello molbio netlanders -
> I just can't let this one go by uncontested.
> In <9302180457.AA20119 at net.bio.net> Dave "KNECHT%UCONNVM.bitnet" complains
> about GCG:
> > ... and from my experience with GCG, I expect it to die a slow death that I 
> > will shed no tears over.  I hate having to work with a manual open on my lap.
> I believe that Dave is terribly mistaken.  In my experience, GCG is THE BEST
> all around commercial package available in this field.  Their technical support
> staff are A #1 and ALWAYS promptly reply to questions with solutions and those
> that are not immediately resolved usually only require a couple of days.  If
> having to always have a manual available is a problem, try running their
> programs with the CHECK qualifier -- this gives you an instant online list of
> all available options and the chance to use them.  Or if you don't like their
> command interface try one of the GCGShell routines available.  I do believe
> that you have not really bothered to give GCG a chance (No flame intended).
... additional stuff about GCG on UNIX deleted
> 		A VERY satisfied GCG user and teacher, Steve Thompson

Then Potter Wickware replied
> I agree with what Dave said about GCG -- I've talked to a lot of users and
> at best they merely tolerate it -- Steve is the first person I've heard
> say he actually _likes_ it.  Whenever I've tried to use it I feel like
> I've just landed on Mars.  I don't think GCG has a future until the user
> interface is improved.  
I guess I am now obligated to make my contribution to the discussion about
GCG.  I must admit that it doesn't have a warm and fuzzy interface but it 
certainly is a reliable software package.  If one can't find time to read 
the documentation then it's really difficult to know the capabilities of a 
software package.  This holds true of course for packages that have a nifty 
GUI as well as those that don't.  My guess is the people that feel the most 
uncomfortable using GCG, normally use another package that provides a 
friendly interface.  When they find out that their preferred package does 
not do a desired analysis, they have to leap into the GCG environment to get 
the job done.  My experience is that if you take a few minutes to read the 
documentation, you can make GCG do what you need -- if you don't know what 
you are doing stick to the defaults.

Jerry Learn                             
<|  Dept. of Botany & Plant Sciences    |      learn at smaug.ucr.edu     |>
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