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Re: Another changelog format, automating the FTP server, etc.

Ian Murdock:
   > Does anyone have opinions about the ChangeLog format?

Bruce Perens:
   I would suggest we make it machine-readable.  That would make it a
   bit easier to look up changes for a specific package, log changes
   for packages together, etc.

Um.. this gets into the question of: what is the purpose of the

The original purpose was a human-readable record of the kinds of
changes that have been made to the system so that people could have an
idea of what's going on with a new distribution.

Most of the times I've seen ChangeLog used, it's been so that multiple
programmers working on the same project can keep tabs on where the
action is.

We've had a semi-formal requirement that package announcements should
include text from the relevant ChangeLog.  This is supposed to give
our audience a way of recognizing if they're interested in a new

The best format I've seen for this purpose is a simple list of changes
-- there's generally no need to know stuff like the time the change
was made, or the source file where the changes went in.  This kind of
thing is almost meaningless with a binary distribution (but could be
important with a source distribution).

Personally, I have a hard time with the ChangeLog discipline.  There's
an art to getting the right level of abstraction, and I generally
don't get it right till well after the changes have been made.


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