Today, I received a pop-up about a new feature - the Command Palette - that was attached to my userspace and enabled - without my consent - or at least without my explicit consent. There’s probably some catch-all legal in the Terms Of Service that says they can do whatever they well please.
At risk of sounding snarky, has GitHub been bought by Google, Facebook, (Meta), Microsoft or some other slimeware vendor?
What makes ANY company think that I want people messing with my stuff behind my back?
What makes ANY company think that this is OK in general?
Would it be OK if I went into YOUR house and changed the furniture around or re-decorated behind your back? Or suddenly set things up with the city so that you need a “permit” (a secure certificate that costs money), just to park in your own driveway?
I just don’t understand the arrogance of this kind of thinking.
I am already having enough trouble as it is trying to develop on a Microsoft-based system where they honestly believe that they have the God-given right to sneak onto my machine and change carefully crafted preferences, settings, and applications behind my back - all under the guise of it being a “security” update? As a consequence, things that worked yesterday stop working today and I waste literally HOURS looking for a regression in my code that turns out was a change Microsoft made while I was asleep so that their marketing guys have a reason to exist.
Yes. I am upset. I already have enough trouble trying to maintain a stable development platform as it is. Please don’t make it even worse.
If you want to make improvements or enhancements to improve our “experience” or make things better with our workflow, or whatever, go right ahead. All I ask is that you tell me about the change, perhaps even explain how things will be so much better because of it, and then allow me to choose if I want it or not.
I don’t understand what the big deal is here. Before your post, I had heard of the Command Palette, but didn’t know what it was. This indicates to me that the Command Palette isn’t very intrusive. I looked it up, and as far as I can tell, the Command Palette has to be activated by a keyboard shortcut. If you never press the keyboard shortcut, the Command Palette never opens. It’s possible that the Command Palette’s shortcut could conflict with another shortcut, but if that’s a problem then you can disable the Command Palette.
They wouldn’t need anything in their Terms of Service to “do whatever they well please.” The can “do whatever they well please” because they own the place.
It’s not yours, it’s theirs. They own and control the GitHub’s source code, they own the GitHub servers and they own github.com. If you don’t like what they’re doing with the place, then you can switch to a different service (like GitLab, Fedora Pagure or SourceForge) or, better yet, host your own solution (using GitLab CE, Pagure, Gitea, or cgit).
This metaphor doesn’t jive with the facts of this situation. The Command Palette is a free optional feature. Even if you couldn’t turn it off you could probably still block it using uBlock Origin. Even if you couldn’t block it, you could still just choose to not use it.
I don’t think that it’s arrogant. Like I mentioned before, the Command Palette is by no means forced upon you. A company tried to make their product better and is advertising that their product is better.
If Microsoft products make you this upset, then you shouldn’t be putting effort into writing these kinds of rants. Instead, you should put effort into using less and less “slimeware” over time.
How does the Command Palette make it worse?
That’s what they did. You literally said “Today, I received a pop-up about a new feature - the Command Palette -[…]”. That pop-up was GitHub “tell[ing you] about the change, perhaps even explain[ing] how things will be so much better because of it”. GitHub does “allow [you] to choose if [you] want it or not.”
Here, I agree that Windows updates are often arrogant, but (compared to the Command Palette) those updates are a very different situation. Also, you say that you cannot “the public attitudes that allow this to happen.” In this situation, you’re part of the problem. If you find this kind of behavior to be unacceptable, then set an example and move away from these products.
As @Jayman2000 has pointed out, the entirety of the Command Palette feature is optional. You can disable Command Palette by clicking on your profile, then on Feature Preview, selecting Command Palette, then clicking Disable.
New feature rollouts sometimes have marketing pushes within the UI behind them. Though the privacy concerns expressed earlier in this thread are a bit unwarranted. And by using GitHub, you agree to abiding by the Terms of Service posted:
However, any privacy concerns about Command Palette itself, might just relate to confusion about what it is, and what it does. There should be no changes to your code base, or your settings, because of the rollout of this feature.
It is true that Microsoft purchased GitHub back in 2018, but new functionality is driven by GitHub employees, not Microsoft. We do generally operate independently and autonomously, despite the corporate structure.
Perhaps it is helpful to know about the Feature Preview option, but for this conversation, closing the thread seems like the best course.
If you have questions or comments about the functionality of Command Palette itself, a new post regarding the actual functionality, would be most welcome.