Proposal: use /usr/bin/open as an alternative for run-mailcap and others.

Nicholas D Steeves nsteeves at
Fri Oct 9 06:13:35 BST 2020


On Thu., Oct. 8, 2020, 00:30 Nicholas Guriev, <guriev-ns at> wrote:
> On Wed, 2020-10-07 at 19:17 -0400, Jeremy Bicha wrote:
> > On Wed, Oct 7, 2020 at 7:15 PM Jeremy Bicha <jeremy at> wrote:
> > > You should be aware that Ubuntu implemented this idea 2 years ago.
> >
> > Oh, I misread. Ubuntu used /usr/bin/browse but 'open' sounds a lot
> In my view, both of these words, "browse" or "open" do not look like a
> for computer. Their drawback is that they are too general.

Well, we already have a /usr/bin/see symlink to run-mailcap, despite this
critique...not many people seem to know about it though.  I agree that
"browse" has bad semantics, is confusing, and I'd additionally reject it as

The proposed "open" symlink supports the specific case of users coming from
MacOS, because we already have "see" as a solution to the problem.  I'd
like to see "see" documented in more places, and I don't see any obvious
reasons why an additional symlink that provides familiarity for MacOS users
is a bad thing, with one exception: is /usr/bin/open too much of a
namespace grab?  Should it be reserved for something more generic and

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