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Re: game-data-packager: why not?

On Wed, 22 May 2013 02:30:08 Jonathan Dowland wrote:
> On Tue, May 21, 2013 at 07:38:24PM +1000, Dmitry Smirnov wrote:
> > On Tue, 21 May 2013 18:31:16 Simon McVittie wrote:
> > > game-data-packager is probably a good way to deal with the data
> > > requirement.
> > 
> > I'm not so sure.
> Why not? (Apart from the maintainer taking too long to approve patches
> people send them ☺)

OK I don't want to be overly critical but I'll try to explain the
problems that I have with "game-data-packager". By the way I fully
agree with your arguments from another email regarding benefits of
packaging game data with user space utility over building from
post-invoke handler.

Since I want to _package_ game data I've made Debian packaging for
it. I'd like to think that I understand pretty well how Debian
packaging works so I have a nice set of debian/* files with all
package metadata. Building with debian toolchain is trivial:
`debian/rules get-orig-source` fetches game data files and
`debuild -b` or `dpkg-buildpackage -b` produces the desirable .DEB

Any Debian maintainer would be able to build or modify this package
because its work flow is no different that what's required to maintain
any other package in archive.

As for "game-data-packager" -- it is a build system and not a very
good one. Call me stupid but for few hours I couldn't figure out how
should I _break_ my (traditional) packaging to produce the same .DEB
file using "game-data-packager". But I don't want to follow uncommon
work flow to package game data. Can "game-data-packager" build my
package with minimum changes to debian/* files?

Even more frustrating to me is that I found difficult to understand
"game-data-packager" documentation. How to build a package from
"game-data-packager" source tree without re-building it? How to
import/convert existing debian package to "game-data-packager"? Why
shall I produce a specific Makefile that doesn't look like normal
debian/rules file?

So I completely dislike the "game-data-packager" approach that
requires to follow quite specific work flow to generate .DEB file(s)
with game data. IMHO ideally it could be just a wrapper over Debian
toolchain to produce game data packages from normal packaging. I don't
see an easy way to convert existing packaging to redundant
"game-data-packager" build system and I doubt that such customised
build system provides any benefits. 

Finally in my case one source package for game data shall produce
dozen binary packages with their own descriptions and dependency
relationships. Such packaging is easier to maintain as normal Debian
packaging rather that as "dumbed-down" "game-data-package" build
system that few people understand how to work with.

 Dmitry Smirnov
 GPG key : 4096R/53968D1B


Truth — Something somehow discreditable to someone.
        -- H. L. Mencken, 1949

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