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Re: Future of Debian uncertain?

On 26-Feb-03, 16:48 (CST), "David D.W. Downey" <david-downey@codecastle.com> wrote: 
> Who are you kidding? Everything in Debian is not about developers. It's
> about the users. You Develop FOR the users. If you have no one using your
> software your software is useless.

Wrong, in so many ways.

First, dividing people into "developers" and "users" is silly. Every
single Debian developer is also a Debian user. The only useful
distinction is "those who do stuff" and "those who don't". Amazingly,
the people who do stuff tend to do things *they* find useful, rather
than things other people tell them they should do -- we get enough of
that at work, or school.

Secondiy, I develop for me, a user. I also develop because I feel that I
owe the many others who share their work. That my modest work is useful
to others is a nice side benefit. However, I owe *nothing* to people
trying to tell me (us) what's important, and how to do things.

> Those of you that think your mighty programming skills make you a
> God, or some such tripe.. Remember, if we the users don't USE your
> software, you're only coding for yourself.

The only thing my programming skills make me is one of the people who
does the work. And I'm absolutely coding only for myself. That doesn't
mean I won't take advice, or suggestions. 

> No, I don't believe that Debian is going to lose users in droves,

Then it must be satisfying the needs of those users.

> I do believe however, that debian is slowly dying due to it's
> seemlingly innate desire to beleive the developer rules all rather
> than a natural balance of power between userland and devel-land.

The developer *does* rule all. There is no natural balance of power
between non-developers and developers. Why should someone who is not
contributing to the work get any right to demand how I do things?

> [snip]
> ... let all
> the suers walk away and see what you have left. A bunch of guys and gals
> coding software for nobody but themselves. And there are not enough
> developers to make that last for long either.

Sure there are. It started with a hell of lot fewer developers than
there are now, and it worked fine then. We will do *exactly* the same
amount of work no matter how many people download it. As long as Debian
meets my needs, I can keep using it. And if a few people quit, and there
are suddenly 5 fewer IRC clients, and only 14 MP3 tag editors, well,
gee, I guess I'll just have to live with it.

Now, all of the above is not to say that Debian couldn't be better. It
could, and there are people *working* on making it better. But they are
doing so because *they* want to do the work, and so they get to set
priorities, and determine what their particular goals are. If you have
different goals, then you need to organize and get the work done.


Steve Greenland
    The irony is that Bill Gates claims to be making a stable operating
    system and Linus Torvalds claims to be trying to take over the
    world.       -- seen on the net

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