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Re: Proposal for collaborative maintenance of packages

On 18/12/05 at 17:19 +0100, Raphael Hertzog wrote:
> [ Sorry for the crosspost, but the subject is of interest to many people ]
> Hello everybody,
> following the last discussion at the Debian-QA meeting on Darmstadt, it
> appears that the proposal called "Collaborative maintenance" is of generic
> interest :
> - for Debian sponsors and Debian mentors
> - for QA which may use the infrastructure for orphaned packages
> - for Ubuntu's MOTU School
> I tried to describe the big lines of the project in this wiki page:
> http://wiki.debian.org/CollaborativeMaintenance


Disclaimer: I'm neither a DD nor a MOTU. I'm part of the debian
pkg-ruby-extras team, which maintains some ruby-related packages
collaboratively. I'm also part of MOTURuby, a MOTU team that takes care
of all ruby-related packages in Ubuntu.

Your proposal mixes technical issues and human issues.

First, technical issues:

* Chances are very low that you will get Ubuntu people to use svn
instead of bzr. bzr is the "official" VCS in Ubuntu, it is written in
Python, the "official" language in Ubuntu. Making Ubuntu people use svn
is like asking a vi user to switch to emacs.

* Generating a dynamic web page means using a non-distributed
architecture. I started working on similar stuff, but with the
assumption that maintainers will run the scripts themselves (or with
cron). An output for ruby-related packages is available on
http://ox.blop.info/bazaar/rubyversionslist.html . The webpage about the
tools is https://wiki.ubuntu.com/MOTUTools . An easier approach could be
to provide the information in an easy way on all websites so some
scripts could fetch the pages, parse them, and generate the useful

Human issues:
* The main problem is how to define trust relationships between DDs,
MOTUs, would-be DD and MOTU-Hopefuls :
  * Do we want to define them globally, or on a per-team basis ?
  * What should they be ? Does Debian want to trust MOTU-hopefuls ? Does
  Ubuntu want to trust would-be DDs ?

I think that we shouldn't try to reach a too wide scope here. Chances
are high it will be too complex and will just fail. Why not start by
developping tools to help Debian & Ubuntu collaborate by exchanging
patches, bug reports and source packages, and wait for collaborative
maintenance ?

Of course, the problem space of REVU and {mentors,sponsors}.d.n is
similar, and common tools could be developed too instead of reinventing
the wheel.
| Lucas Nussbaum
| lucas@lucas-nussbaum.net   http://www.lucas-nussbaum.net/ |
| jabber: lucas@nussbaum.fr             GPG: 1024D/023B3F4F |

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