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Re: allow missing description fields and empty long descriptions for Rust/etc packages?

On Thu, 2023-09-21 at 19:05 +0200, Fabian Grünbichler wrote:

> the structured metadata of crates only has a short description[0]

Would the Debian Rust team be willing to talk to the upstream
Rust community on adding the concept of crate long descriptions?

> which is often also not very meaningful

Seems like something to be addressed by sending patches upstream,
presumably the Rust team are already doing that though?

> our tooling adds additional boilerplate text that is automatically
> added (for example, which cargo features or binaries a given package
> enables/contains), which is often rather redundant (since the
> features for example are already contained in the package name and/or
> provided virtual package names).

Personally I think this boilerplate has little to no value, cutting the
long sentence down to something like just "Rust crate foo" would help,
until the other options have caused real long descriptions to be added.

> we could try harder in debcargo to extract from other sources
> (with less structure), such as the first paragraph of a readme or of the
> "main" documentation[1]. we have tooling in place that allows us to
> track overrides of auto-generated files (e.g., d/control for rust crates
> is usually completely autogenerated from upstream sources and a
> declarative packaging config file, but if it is overridden, we check in
> the auto-generated version so we notice any changes we might need to
> fold into the override file), which could also be used to track changes
> to the upstream "long descriptions" so that there is no unwanted
> deviation over time.
> as a last resort, we could also make explictly setting and checking in
> an override for the generated (base) long description mandatory, if
> desired.

It sounds like the Debian community would like the long descriptions to
be real descriptions for Rust crate packages (and I would like minimal
boilerplate at minimum). If the Rust team is willing to update debcargo
and curate the long descriptions for new and existing rust-* packages,
that plan to achieve that sounds good.



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