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Re: new scripts and patches for devscripts

On Thu, Mar 10, 2011 at 04:46:01PM +0000, Lars Wirzenius wrote:
> I suspect most people who want to add something to devscripts don't
> start off by deciding that they want to do that. Instead they have an
> itch they want to scratch, they write something quick to get fix that,
> and then realize that it might be useful for others, and submit it to
> devscripts.
> That's certainly what happened to dd-list.

Exactly the same thing happened to me with debcheckout, which I
initially wrote as a fire and forget ack and then lured me into
co-maintaining devscripts with others.

The argument of maintenance burden is in general a valid one, but IME
maintenance burden in devscripts is more limited by the amount of people
who are interested in maintaining a specific (dev)script than by the
needed language knowledge. Given that two DDs have already stepped up to
maintain the Python scripts at hand, the maintenance burden argument
seems moot here.

Also, considering we are talking about Python and not, say, my beloved
OCaml, I wouldn't be surprised to discover that among active Debian
developers we have nowadays more Python knowledge than Perl knowledge
(but I'm already regretting starting this potential troll ...). Back to
numbers, according to [1] already in Debian 4.0 the number of SLOC in
the archive of Python vs Perl was very close (2.5% vs 2.8%) with a
strong growing trend for Python.

To conclude with an obvious argument, rewriting useful tools which are
known to work and which are currently maintained by a derived distro,
when they are already written in a popular language, doesn't seem to be
the smartest thing to do to me.


[1] http://www.springerlink.com/content/c516h8t6l16251l5/

Stefano Zacchiroli -o- PhD in Computer Science \ PostDoc @ Univ. Paris 7
zack@{upsilon.cc,pps.jussieu.fr,debian.org} -<>- http://upsilon.cc/zack/
Quando anche i santi ti voltano le spalle, |  .  |. I've fans everywhere
ti resta John Fante -- V. Capossela .......| ..: |.......... -- C. Adams

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