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Re: If Debian wants to grow, let it grow. Or: King James reading Anarchy FAQ

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> The main problem I see is that relevance is relative. I maintain several
> packages of biology. For the researcher in biology, they should have
> Priority:required. For the rest of mankind, Priority:useless.  We do not
> need only an axis of importance but also a plane of domains of interest.

great idea, but this whole thing only solves one problem -- that the users
have to filter through a lot of packages when they get debian. in a perfect
world, the users' convenience would be all we care about. sadly, though, it
isn't, and my main problem with having all these less-relevant packages is
the load on the ftp maintaners and more importantly mirrors. every extra
gigabyte of useless junk (sorry, no offense intended to you hard-working
maintainers of non-program data, i'm just trying to add drama to my mails ;)
eliminates a potential mirror of the archives. if we want to put all this
stuff in there, therefore, and i think it's an admirable idea, we need to
give the mirrors some way to decide what they don't think is relevant enough
to strain their nets and disks for. sadly, i don't know of any good 3-d
prioritizing ftp mirror software (maybe gnus should be adapted ;), so all
this will be next to pointless for the mirrors, and eventually we'll be
stuck with nothing but http.orbit.debian.org, and all our users will need to
get satellite dishes to get a good operating system. ;) so that's why i
advocate a separate distribution for all pure-data packages.

and while i'm on this thread, to all of those who claim the bible is more
relevant than the anarchy faq because it comes with reading software (ooo),
i offer the following paragraph.

the anarchy faq comes with a reader program too. it's called "lynx" and it's
truly excellent. there are also a multitude of other readers for it, mostly
graphical ones; debian distributes at least six, and there are even some
proprietary ones. the difference between these and oh-so-special kjv reader?
the author and packager of the anarchy faq were not so arrogant that they
didn't imply that the file format they used was absolutely unique and could
only be used for the anarchy faq ever, and will only have one program that
can read it ever, and so they very cleverly decided to make the faq and the
software separate packages. ditto for fortunes-mod and fortunes-*, and those
even had the same maintainer. so tell me, is it that the file format the
bible is stored in is -so- phenomenally optimized for the bible, king james
version, that nobody in the world would ever bother to write any other
document in it? or is it that it's *so* phenomenally hard to render that
nobody in the world could possibly write another piece of software to read
it? come on, be honest with yourselves. there's no logical reason not to
split the reading software for bible-kjv to another package and then treat
the data itself the same way we treat other data, whether that ends up being
toss it all in, move it to dists/etexts, not allowed period, or whatever. i
just can't buy that the reader and the text are so integrated that they
can't be treated separately like they're supposed to be.

- --phouchg
"Reasoning is partly insane" --Rush, "Anagram (for Mongo)"
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