Reply to post: Re: its not a folder, it is a directory!

A computer file system shouldn't lose data, right? Tell that to Apple


Re: its not a folder, it is a directory!

Technically true, but just as technically irrelevant to 99% of people using that system to store their files (and simply don't care what the OS chooses to call the "same" things where it keeps it's files).

For them, a directory is a folder in which they put their files. How the content of those files is scattered across the underlying storage is (quite rightly) of no interest to them, and indeed the file system and OS work hard to make it unnecessary for them to be concerned about such things.

A "folder" is nothing but a term for a directory that has a specific user context overlaid upon it - remove the user context and in the system context it's still a directory. A rose by any other name and all that.

Now, if "folder" could mean something else entirely in the context of a file system thus giving rise to confusion and miscommunication then there might be a real cause for complaint. But otherwise it's just jargon fetishism/puritanical technoclature.

I'm all for using accurate language, but technical terminology is designed to aid communication and for utility the context is just as important as strict technical accuracy.

When discussing the file system in the absence of any user context, consistently referring to all such things as directories may make perfect sense. But when the context involves specific user experiences on (e.g.) macOS then it is just as sensible to use terminology appropriate in that context e.g. to differentiate in macOS between a directory of user documents (folder) and a directory of application contents (package), which are both "directories" at the file system level but very, very different in terms of the user experience.

- ICON: I'll get my outerwear

("coat" is a specific user context and I refuse to call it a coat when it might not be a coat but could be a jacket or a smock or an overall or an apron or .. )

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