A lot of people are confused by git. Most of these people, I reckon, learned it from the outside in - from the command-line interface down. If you started with git by asking "how do I sync up my changes with my peers", then you might get the answer, but you will be missing the foundation on which that answer is built. This is the main source of confusion with git.
The better way is to learn git from the inside out. You should first learn about what objects are and how they're stored and identified, and how they relate to each other. You should learn what blobs, trees, and commits actually are, and how they relate to each other, and how commits form a linked list from which a graph of all objects can be derived.
Then you should learn how the ref database gives friendly names like "master" and "feature/foobar" to objects, and how the reflog tracks changes to references over time.
THEN, and only then, should you learn how to use the CLI. Then you can learn about using the staging area to add objects to the database and create commits, and how doing this updates the reflog.
Git makes total sense when you approach it from this angle. Supposedly hard tools like git rebase are totally understandable when you view them with the appropriate foundational knowledge.
Git is a tool which you will reach for hundreds of times a day, every day, for your entire career. Maybe it's worth learning about properly.
@sir I explained how git's filesystem works to my boss the other day
it's nearly a text-based format (there's one place where it uses a single NUL byte)
@farhan checkout makes sense when you understand it incontext. Switching branches and "using" a file (what does that mean? Do you mean resetting a file?) are the same fundamental process in git. Again, you're looking from the outside in when you should be looking from the inside out.
@sir Could you recommend some ressources where beginners could start reading?
@sir and yet, I still butcher my repos with rebase. Every damn time.
@ls I think the line of thinking which treats git's internal structure as... internal, i.e. something you shouldn't be aware of, is mistaken. Being aware of those internals gives you an understanding which unlocks a lot of powerful tools, workflows, and options.
@sir Yes, it surely does. It helps to know how thinks work, that's true for a car, too. But #Git requires you to know about the internals but a car doesn't. I think Git is (one of) the most powerful repo systems we have, but it's still poorly designed. I don't like that rebase-stuff. In my opinion, the history should be strictly readonly.
@ls I mean, but we're not talking about the suburban mom driving the mini-van to drop the kids off at soccer practice. We're talking about professionals. Should a racecar driver not understand how cars work?
@sir A race car driver is not a gear box or drive train engineer, that's a different job profile. I think, professionals appreciate tools which help them do their actual job and are not a project by itself.
@moonbolt @sir @ls Yeah, exactly! Most people don't need to know anything about blobs and trees. It'll just be confusing and a turn-off. If you know what a /commit/ is and how they relate (i.e. commits are changesets, and it's a tree of commits [technically DAG, but saying tree to start with is less intimidating]) then you should be good, I'd think.
@sir @moonbolt @ls I mean, when /would/ you need to go digging in the .git folder? With things like rebase and filter-branch, I've never needed to myself. Data recovery /maaybe/, but I wouldn't expect regular users to need to know how to handle that.
And for redacting private things that shouldn't have been committed, also maybe – but we have tools for that.
@IceWolf @sir @ls Not that elegance isn't nice. But we badly need sound abstractions: otherwise we'll end up with ecosystems that have impossibly high barriers to entry, because before you can do anything, you need to know the theory and internals, which requires a good understanding of the theory and internals of everything it's based on, which requires a good understanding of…
Probably doesn't help that there's no lesson on it in Computer Science schools and college, in France at least, you're supposed to learn it by yourself :/
Gave a course on git to my colleagues the other day and I did precisely that. The plumbing *then* the porcelain
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