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Re: Perl version of Python Enhancement Proposals [PEP]

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Russ Allbery
July 24, 2000 04:33
Re: Perl version of Python Enhancement Proposals [PEP]
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Simon Cozens <> writes:

> Yuh. I think we're *again* in grave danger of throwing the baby out with
> the bathwater. There's nothing wrong with the single-list model; look at
> Linux, or the GIMP (or the other GNOME projects), or practically every
> other large Open Source project out there. Apart from Python,
> interestingly, which seems to be taking the Special Interest Group path
> we're suggesting. I wonder if that's significant.

Let me point at another project that uses the single list approach, and
which I think is one of the best-managed projects out there:  gcc.  Most
of the *really* good ideas about project management I've learned from
watching the gcc list, and they too use this model.

(Well, actually they have two lists, gcc and gcc-patches.  But the second
is largely due to the fact that there's a requirement that everything
checked into the repository is also sent to the mailing list as a patch.
Something that I think is *wonderful* as someone watching the project from
outside, although I realize that it's a bit hard to get to the point where
you're in the habit of doing that.)

> Single-list models work, but p5p didn't work. What didn't work about it,
> and how can we fix it?

Maybe I'm alone in the wilderness here, but p5p worked great for me.  I've
always been a little bit mystified at why people were so upset with it; I
guess I understand a little bit, but overall I just didn't mind it that
much.  I agree that the tone could be a problem, though.  Looking at other
development lists that I follow, what would normally happen is that as
soon as things started to get a little heated, one of the package
maintainers would jump in and go "hey folks, this is completely
inappropriate here; please take it somewhere else."  And it worked.

I'm not sure why this didn't work with p5p; I think it may be related to
the fact that Larry practically never did that and a few personality
conflicts got out of control, and then once that happens it's very hard to
ever get things back to a presumption of civility.

But there are innumerable other projects out there with just as many
hard-headed and quick-tempered people working on them, and they manage not
to bite each other's heads off.  It's *got* to be possible for us to find
some way of behaving the same.

Russ Allbery (             <>

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