On May 23, 2013, at 02:17 PM, Josselin Mouette wrote: >I’m not criticizing the fact that upstart comes from Ubuntu. I disagree >with the idea of having Ubuntu as the sole origin of innovation in the >project. It gives bad habits to both Debian and Ubuntu if the natural >thing to do to make things happen in Debian is to make them happen in >Ubuntu first. For a comparable innovation, I’m thankful to Canonical for >making multiarch happen, but the fact that we have waited for Ubuntu to >make it happen is the symptom of a Debian problem that needs solving. I don't think it's necessarily a bad thing for Debian and Ubuntu to have this kind of symbiotic relationship. Maybe from a Debian point of view, it shouldn't be necessary, but given the current realities of differing release schedules, goals, focus, and resources, where such an arrangement exists, I think it can - and should - be used for mutual benefit. This of course requires good coordination between the parties involved in both distributions, and motivated people in both camps that want to strengthen collaboration. Of course, some folks will only have feet in one or the other, and that's fine too. Some recent examples include transitions we've seen in the Python world. The push for dh_python2, the push for Python 3 support, and the transition to newer versions of the interpreter are all great examples (IMHO) where Debian and Ubuntu worked together to come to some semblance of consensus, and where Ubuntu, by benefit of its timed release schedule was able to be more aggressive in adopting some of those transitions. It was also able to experience and alleviate some of the pain first too. But this was *always* done with the goal of ensuring those changes would get pushed back into Debian when the time was right. In such cases, the assistance, insight, expertise, resources, and feedback of experienced Debian developers was crucial. It's usually (but not always) easier to get changes that appear in Debian first, migrated into Ubuntu. IME, it's often harder to get changes from Ubuntu into Debian. I think there's ample opportunity to help make this barrier lower on both sides of the pond. Some of the hurdles include: - Team based vs. individual maintainership. In Ubuntu, no one person (or group of people) maintains any package. There's a strong sense of team for maintaining packages. This has an advantage in that important updates need not block on availability, workload, vacations, etc. of individual maintainers (not that it can't block on other reasons). In Debian, teams like PAPT and DPMT do help with this. - Membership differences. I am currently sitting on the Ubuntu Developer Membership Board, and I am in the final stages of my DD application. Applying for DD was way more thorough than achieving core-dev in Ubuntu. Now, this may or may not be a good thing, but one of the key things that the DMB is addressing is how to streamline approval for DDs. It should be fairly clear that a DD has the requisite technical expertise to package things for Ubuntu, so the initial interaction with the DMB can (mostly) accept that as a given, and thus explore other requirements of Ubuntu membership. Hopefully (and I'd like to hear if otherwise) this means that a DD who wants to also contribute to Ubuntu, should be able to get the needed permissions fairly quickly and easily. In Debian, it would be nice if the process were made easier, or more inviting for Ubuntu developers. - Tool mismatches. I just wish it were easier to build packages for both Debian and Ubuntu, but the tools chains are sufficiently different that it's difficult to switch your (well, *my* ;) brain into Debian mode from Ubuntu mode and vice versa. Part of it is dealing with Ubuntu Distribute Development (UDD), which I'm very comfortable with, and which gives me a source-full checkout of a package (debian/ + unpacked upstream) all managed in a DVCS branch. I can grab the source for any version of any package on any release of Ubuntu (and actually, Debian too!) through Launchpad, so it's easy to make a change, do merges from Debian or upstream, build it locally, test it, and upload it. I personally find the Debian tools (svn instead of a dvcs, debian/ only directory) harder to deal with, but maybe that's just me. I've said before that as much as I dislike git, if Debian had something like UDD+bzr but git based and more interoperable with quilt packages, I'd use it. Also, I do think that Ubuntu's source-only uploads are a win. PPAs are nice too, as are the new -proposed pocket for the in-development release. - All is not roses in Ubuntu-land though. When uploads to Debian are delayed (e.g. because of release freezes), then Ubuntu can get ahead of Debian in ways that are more difficult to untangle. Ubuntu's auto-import from Debian gets blocked whenever a package has an -NubuntuM version number. These take manual effort to resync, but of course even that's not always possible since some Ubuntu-specific deltas won't or can't be adopted into Debian (e.g. a build-dependency crossing main and universe). I wonder if there's isn't a way to make this smoother so packages can more easily cross the chasm. Anyway, I've rambled enough. My intent wasn't to offend either community, but just to say that Debian and Ubuntu work best when they appeal to their strengths, but always strive for collaboration. And maybe there's opportunity to ease some of the rough spots. Cheers, -Barry  Please note that I am not complaining about my own personal DD journey. My experience, although it took a long time, was a great learning experience, and quite pleasant. I have nothing but respect and gratitude for my AM and the Front Desk.  Well, assuming the importer hasn't barfed on the package.
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