MattyT matty at
Fri Oct 25 06:51:05 UTC 2002

On Fri, 2002-10-25 at 06:18, Myk Melez wrote:

>> We have certainly done this sort of thing before, but not for everything
>> (or even most things), and I think we should expect it to be.
> I disagree.  Design discussions on this list have had some very bad 
> results, f.e. the "sending mail" patch which got bogged down on design 
> so much that nothing has been done, even though all the proposed 
> solutions were good enough and any of them would have been better than 
> no change at all, which is what we have now.

I fail to see how this justifies not receiving peer review.  Peer review
is at the core of the good volunteer projects and is why they produce
good software.  The logical extension of your argument is to never talk
about designs at all, since someone might complain and bog the bug down.

It is not "design by committee" if someone holds a big stick and is
willing to use it quickly.  You also have not offered any proof that we
are worse off in the long run through having the discussion on mail,
even if it did get bogged down for a while.  When things get "shunted
through", you often are sacrificing your long term quality for short
term gains.

If Bugzilla had been designed from the start to be templatised,
internationalised, fully field value customisable, run in taint mode,
back end separated, blah blah blah, we would have been where we are
today a lot earlier.  Obviously there were time constraints placed on
Terry by that led to these decisions.  But most of us now
are individual developers who don't have to continue to make these sorts
of decisions.  A little time invested now pays off big in the long run.

Also note that you're much more likely to notice deadlocked design
discussions on this list because historically they're generally already
deadlocked by the time they get onto the list, as they have started on
IRC or on bmo, and escalated.  They're also longer, more memorable
threads because of the argument.  Hence I think the argument factor is
quite an exaggeration.

         Matthew Tuck: Software Developer & All-Round Nice Guy        
 My Short Autobiography: 1985 Grade Bin Monitor 1990 Class Clown Award
1992 Awarded Most Likely To Spontaneously Combust 1996 Crowned Galactic
         Emperor 1998 Released From Smith Psychiatric Hospital

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