Once Upon a Time in Bugzilla Land

Matty mattyt at tpg.com.au
Sat Dec 11 16:52:58 UTC 2004

Once upon a time in a land far away there lived a Bugzilla called
bugzilla.mozilla.org.  bugzilla.mozilla.org was much loved by her
friends, as she had a very good memory and organisation skills.  But as
with every relationship, there was problems.

You see, bugzilla.mozilla.org was not perfect, and could never remember
all of the tags she was supposed to put on bugs.  Because of this, some
mean people started coming up to her and slapping tags saying "RFE" on
her forehead so she wouldn't forget.  This made her very ugly and she
felt sad.

But all was not lost, for the great Terry, creator of all things
Bugzilla, helped bugzilla.mozilla.org to remember the dependencies
between her bug reports, and there was much rejoicing.

Instead of being ugly, bugzilla.mozilla.org started to create fake bugs
called "meta bugs" that were used for tags.

But there was a problem, bugzilla.mozilla.org found it difficult to tell
people about lots of tags on lots of bugs, and people didn't really
understand what all these numbers were that she kept telling them about.

And woe, the peons realised this and did not stop putting tags on her
forehead.  This made her doubly sad.

But there was still hope, for a young genius called Matty (and some
other nameless peons) had an idea to help bugzilla.mozilla.org remember
these tags properly, to make bugzilla.mozilla.org and her friends happy

And he came to the great Terry, and told him of his concerns.  He told
him of his idea to teach bugzilla.mozilla.org to remember these tags,
and together they saw that it was good.

And so the great Terry taught bugzilla.mozilla.org to remember these
tags, and he called the tags "keywords".  And there was much rejoicing.

But the peons were stuck in their ways, and did not want to change.
Matty knew that keywords were just, and remained just.  They were the
shining light that would set bugzilla.mozilla.org free of her ailments.
Matty knew that given time, bugzilla.mozilla.org could use keywords
better than forehead tags or meta bugs ever had.

But again there was trouble in Bugzilla land, for a evil giant dragon
named "Life" had returned from the distant past.  The dragon attacked
the great Terry and swallowed him whole.  He was never seen again.
There are rumours he lives on inside the belly of the dragon even today,
but no proof has ever been found.

bugzilla.mozilla.org so wanted to just use keywords, but she needed the
help of others to do so.  Many replaced the great Terry, and they were
good to her, but no one would help her deal with keywords better.

And bugzilla.mozilla.org cried.  And the peons stuck tags on her
forehead while she was crying.

Years went by, and things did improve.  Many of the peons joined the
Church of Keywords.

But yet again all was not well.  For dark forces formed the Cult of the
TooLongKeywordList, and no one was brave enough to stand against them.

And Matty cried along with bugzilla.mozilla.org, because he was too weak
to challenge the Cult.

The story might have ended there, but for a young acolyte named Myk.
Myk had an idea for a new type of keywords that was better, stronger.
And Myk taught bugzilla.mozilla.org these new keywords, which were
called "flags".  And all rejoiced.

But Myk was a busy man, and he did not make the peons use flags instead
of keywords.  And still, no one helped bugzilla.mozilla.org to use
keywords or flags better than forehead tags or meta bugs.

And the peons stuck more tags on her forehead.

And woe unto the land, for what a mess everyone had made.
bugzilla.mozilla.org had four different ways of remembering tags, none
of which were entirely better than any of the others.

And Matty saw this, and he came onto the people, and he said "Isn't it
time we do something about this nonsense?"

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