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Re: On Bugs

On Tue, Oct 03, 2000 at 07:36:53AM -0400, Michael Stone wrote:
> On Tue, Oct 03, 2000 at 04:10:34AM +1000, Anthony Towns wrote:
> > Why would anyone not take a "normal" severity bug seriously?
> You have 158 outstanding bugs according to the BTS, a large number of
> them at normal severity. Are you simply not taking them seriously?

Or am I just too busy doing other things than fixing them? *shrug*

> can a casual observer tell which of those normal bugs is truely
> important (in the normal sense of the word, not in the obscure
> policy-based sense) and which are not?

Well, what do you mean by important? They're all important: they're
bugs, they annoy people enough for them to report it. Why is, say,
"apt-console sucks for colour-blind users" more or less important than
"update-inetd can only add one entry for a service"?

What difference does it make if a casual observer can't easily compare
and constrat the importance of two bugs? The only real people who want
to prioritise bugs are presumably the people who're interested in fixing
them, which presumably means -qa people and the maintainer.

I suspect, really, that some subjective "importance" scale is probably
not really relevant to NMUing and -qa. Ideally, we'd NMU all bugs,
but since we've got limited time, we're probably much more likely to
NMU bugs that cause us problems, or that are easy to fix.

Actually, there's an interesting BTS wishlist / bugzilla feature that
might help: voting on bugs. ie, you can say "I'd really like 12345 fixed"
and then get a list of bugs sorted by number of votes. debbugs can't be
trivially modified to support this though.

> Perhaps the larger problem here is that our bts doesn't recognize
> degrees of severity. Not all bugs that are "normal" in a policy sense
> are of equal severity. It would be nice if there were a mechanism for
> rating the impact of a bug. What you're proposing makes a lie out of the
> term "severity". 

Err. It may not match what you think of when you see the word "severity",
but that's not necessarily a bad thing. It's also probably why we have
explicit definitions of what the various severity levels mean.


Anthony Towns <aj@humbug.org.au> <http://azure.humbug.org.au/~aj/>
I don't speak for anyone save myself. GPG signed mail preferred.

  ``We reject: kings, presidents, and voting.
                 We believe in: rough consensus and working code.''
                                      -- Dave Clark

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