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Re: Bug#139945: ITP: prokyon3 -- a multithreaded MP3 manager and tag editor for Linux.

On Wed, Mar 27, 2002 at 04:10:21PM -0500, Stephen Ryan wrote:
> On Tue, 2002-03-26 at 15:43, Michael Banck wrote: 
> > I'm cool with Marcus' technical comments either pointing out the hurd's
> > superiority or warning about linuxisms, but I read Jeroens' post as a
> > superflous attempt to steamline the political correctness and formal
> > expressions towards the hurd. In that case, a minor bugreport against
> > the uploaded package would be more effective than posting to -devel.
> I've seen far too many of those cheerleading type of posts about the
> Hurd, both here and on a couple of websites.  They are even more
> annoying than the slashdot Linux cheerleaders; at least the official
> website for the Hurd is considerably more realistic about what the Hurd
> is and is not. 

The Hurd page is just tries to be sure that users don't get
disappointed. I know what the current state of the Hurd is, I've run
it myself, I've read some code. But more than that, I know what the
Hurd potential is.

Second I said that there could be more users of other Debian
'ports'. That includes Debian *BSD. I think the BSD kernel is really
better than Linux. It's more stable, portable (NetBSD), secure
(OpenBSD), etc. Only in the availability of device drivers and some
other things scores Linux better IMHO.

> I know why the Hurd is cool; I've read through the website, glanced
> through the design documents, read a bunch of the technical comments
> posted here, and it looks good.  The Hurd is a cutting edge research
> project. 
> That's the theory. 

The practice is that the Hurd is also cool. Only the current state
isn't, but when we fix that I'm almost sure people want to

> In practice, RMS recently made some public pronouncement about the Hurd
> approaching a 1.0, and "likely to be available at the end of this year";
> (See http://www.idg.net/ic_829012_4394_1-3921.html ). I think he's on
> crack.  Not only that, but the poor reporter said something about
> "production version" 

You are the one who thinks it's 1.0. I think if the Hurd and the GNU
system will be released the version number will be 0.3. When this will
be done nobody knows, RMS only said that it will be likely to be
before the end of the year. 

The Hurd is already available now. It's also already in production in
an increasing number of machines.

> I think it is clear that one major job (perhaps *the* major job) of an
> operating system kernel is to manage access to hardware resources
> management up to end-user applications.  

The management itself doesn't have to be in the kernel. Only the
access control.

> The Hurd faces an uphill battle, in that there is already a fairly good
> kernel available under the GPL, and it is improving at a very rapid
> rate.  

Depends on what you need. For what I need, the Hurd does it better.

> The Hurd will have to be better than what I have now in order to
> persuade me to switch.  OS/2 offered a substantial improvement over
> Windows - it didn't crash and offered superior multitasking.  Linux
> offered a substantial improvement over OS/2 - it also doesn't crash,
> also offers robust multitasking, it is Free, it has LaTeX installed
> (either as an easy add-on, or by default), allows remote use and
> interoperation with other UN*X like systems (which was more important
> when I had a 486 and an account on an Alpha) and it supports multiple
> processors.  

The Hurd offers most of these things. Maybe not the "doesn't crash"
but we want to fix that before the end of the year. ;-) It's really
improving however.

> Those are just the reasons I switched to Linux; since I've
> started using Linux, I now have additional reasons, such as MP3 audio, a
> USB digital camera and CD burning.  The bar has been raised, and it
> isn't going back down.  

True, but the Hurd could support those things easily if just somebody
writes it. I think hacking the Hurd is easier than hacking Linux. We
also work more efficient IMHO (we have to, we don't have much
manpower). And I think the Hurd has the potential to raise the bar
higher than Linux does now.
> It seems to me that making comments about the majority of Debian users
> just abandoning working systems in favor of something that has yet to
> see the light of day is both premature and immature, at best.  

They could also switch to BSD. Actually when saying that I was
thinking about a lot of people switching to the *BSD ports, a few to
the Hurd, that could make the number of users of those ports higher
than the number of Debian GNU/Linux within about 2 years. Maybe there
is even another kernel coming to Debian, we don't know.

Jeroen Dekkers
Jabber supporter - http://www.jabber.org Jabber ID: jdekkers@jabber.org
Debian GNU supporter - http://www.debian.org http://www.gnu.org
IRC: jeroen@openprojects

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