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Bug#741573: Proposed draft of ballot to resolve menu/desktop question

Hi Charles, and thanks for your feedback,

Le lundi, 17 août 2015, 21.25:59 Charles Plessy a écrit :
> I think that option D has two fundamental flaws and I would like to
> recommend the TC against voting for it.
> * First, if it is voted, nothing will happen.
> If the TC adopts option D, and if the maintainer (no plural) of the
> 'menu' package decides to not follow point 3's recommendation, what
> will be the practical difference between option D and option Z ?

I disagree with this, because of the last sentence of D1, put in force 
using §6.1.1 (decide on any matter of technical policy): "Applications 
providing a .desktop file should not provide a Debian menu file." This 
will allow maintainers that _do_ provide .desktop files to stop 
providing .menu files as well.

> I voiced this concern in 2014 (741573#450), but got no answer.  Who do
> you expect to do the work ?

Either the 'menu' maintainer and/or anyone sufficiently interested in 
keeping said system relevant. With D1 in place, I expect .menu files to 
start disappearing from the archive at a good pace; it will become 
somewhat urgent for those relying on the menu system to work towards 
having this .desktop-to-menu translation infrastructure in place.

> The reason I ask is that option D carries nothing new.  In 2008, we
> already had a discussion which outcome was very similar to what is
> proposed in option D.
>     https://wiki.debian.org/Proposals/DebianMenuUsingDesktopEntries

I think it is quite reasonable to assume that Keith's proposal is a 
derivative of that proposal.

> * Second, it does not solve the problem that I sumbitted to the TC.

The TC is currently trying to decide whether to decide on the conflict 
(AB vs C) or to decide on the 'menu' matter of technical policy (D).

I honestly think all 4 options would resolve the "unresolvable conflict" 
that you referred to the TC.

> See in particular Josselin's objection in 741573#405 and Keith's
> answer:
> > One of the problems I have with your proposal, compared to
> > Charles’ original patch, is that it encourages maintainers of
> > hundreds of (IMHO useless) menu files to port them to the desktop
> > format.

I agree that the current proposition doesn't address this problem in D1, 
in that it says:
> packages for which the Debian menu system currently applies should
> provide a .desktop file

One key word is "currently" in there. I think it is reasonable to read 
this as "run 's/register a menu entry/provide a FreeDesktop .desktop 
file/g' over Policy §9.6". It would certainly not prevent further 
changes to §9.6 as long as the TC decision is respected.

From what I understand of your opposition, you're afraid that further 
discussions around softening the "all packages that provide applications 
that need not be passed any special command line arguments for normal 
operation should provide a FreeDesktop .desktop file entry for those 
application" part would be met with unresolvable opposition from Bill, 
right? What about the following formulation then (not yet entirely 
convinced, but I hope that's a step forward)?

>   1. The Technical Committee resolves that applications providing a
>      .desktop file should not provide a Debian menu file.

This would delegate the decision on which applications are supposed to 
provide a .desktop file to (arguably yet another) the Debian Policy 


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