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Re: Criteria for sponsoring packages (was: RFS: ripit (updated package))

On Tue, 28 Apr 2009 10:13:09 +0200
Adeodato Simó <dato@net.com.org.es> wrote:

> > > Note that not everything in Neil's guidelines are appropriate to
> > > *every* package.
> > Well, not even that, many of them are a pure matter of personal
> > preference, or apply directly only to him:
> Forgot to add, I completely get it's not Neil who's saying these
> guidelines should become some kind of standard, since he has never
> said they apply to anybody except his sponsoring. 

If it would be useful, I am happy to separate those criteria that are
personal from those that are more generalised, but you're absolutely
right, Adeodato, I've always asserted that nothing in the page needs to
apply to anybody except when I'm acting as sponsor (and I certainly try
to implement the same guidelines for my own packages too, that's only
fair). If that isn't clear on the page, I can add something to assert it

Even the generalised items do not necessarily have universality across
all of Debian.

> So, there's nothing
> wrong with him adding subjective criteria in *his* document, and was
> merely challenging the claim that they should be some kind of
> widely-adopted standard, or that they are useful without a big grain
> of salt.
> Hope that clears up my intent. There's nothing wrong with properly
> labelled stuff.

The list started by building on other sponsor guidelines, I've built it
up over time and adapted it.

Ben, to answer your statement:
> Rather, it's best to see them as a coherent set of questions to *have
> good answers to*, for every package that one prepares. Neil's
> guidelines, and other similar checklists by other sponsors, are very
> helpful to prompt me to think about my package from a critical
> perspective, which is very difficult to achieve in isolation.

In terms of packages which I am not actually sponsoring, the set isn't
going to be particularly coherent and has not been written with any
intent to create a generalised checklist for all packages. That
reference, IMHO, is a combination of the New Maintainer Guide, The
Developer's Reference and Debian Policy. Those are the authoritative

By all means use the page for your own work, but please don't make it
into something it is not or recommend it for purposes that are beyond
the scope of the actual document. 

It's a bit like normal software in Debian - offered in the hope it will
be useful but without any warranty that it is universal or
authoritative beyond my own sponsoring.

Indeed, if any of my sponsoring requires a change in the page, I will
update the page again.

I really cannot support Ben's sweeping generalisation that my page is
suitable for every package prepared for Debian. Please use my page and
the pages created by other sponsors in the manner in which they were
offered - as guidelines that are not necessarily binding unless you
want to work with the person who wrote those particular guidelines.

Yes, there are elements that can be useful to many packages in Debian
but that's about the limit of what the page can achieve.


Neil Williams

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