Microsoft has made its living building software applications that are more self-documenting and otherwise easier to use than its competitors. Thus, I was unsurprised to learn that my feature team wants to gather customer ideas for alternatives to the “unix-y” stdout option.

Wait! That's you. Already have an opinion. Let it be known.

If you're one of the 99.99999% of human beings that don't know what stdout is, don't worry about it. I did not learn what erudite means until high school.  Obtuse still trips me up.  And orthogonal?  Orthagonal must be the most abused English word at Microsoft after heuristic, which is a good description of this post, don't you think? 

Have your eyes glazed over yet?  When we read words (or quasi-words) like orthogonal and stdout out of context, our brains reel and our eyes glaze over. What the heck is stdout?  Who cares!

For Team Foundation's source control command line, I think that stdout be replaced with either “>[format]“ or “sendto:[format]“.

The following examples display the contents of a source-controlled file in the default viewer for that type of file. Note that - and / are interchangeable command line option identifiers.

vstf View myfile.doc /sendto:viewer

vstf View foo.txt ->viewer

The following examples display the contents of the specified source-controlled files in the command console (a quick view):

vstf View header.h -sendto:console

vstf View foo.txt />console

What do you think?  Should > replace stdout? What about sendto:?  Record your comments here.