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Re: Small teams and other platform positions...

On Fri, 25 Mar 2005, Ean Schuessler wrote:

> I disagree. The bulk of work in Debian is not done by employees of
> professional Debian service companies that regularly attend required events.

Employees maybe not, but the majority of the work in Debian is done by
people who probably spend 20+ hours a week on it and if that's not
professional it certainly isn't what I'd call amateur either.

Then we have many DDs who just basically react to bugs in their packages
but otherwise don't really pay much attention to project matters.

It seems rather pointless to hobble the first class just to cater to the
second class and equally pointless to make the second class have to jump
through hoops just because the first class can.

> > It should be easy for people to jump into Debian for a few months and jump
> > out.  Maybe they could do it repeatedly if they felt like it.  The
> > structure to do this would involve both electronic and real life bits.
> Agreed. Seems like a different topic of discussion.

Well, it's related because as you can tell, I think trying to keep Debian
the way it used to be is a dead end.  So the task becomes one of triage.
How can we preserve all the good things such as democracy and openness in
the new order?  I don't claim to have all the answers but I think this is
a promising avenue for discussion.

> I agree that there are advantages. I also think face-to-face meetings should
> be held for social purposes. I assert that core Debian "business processes"
> should always center around cooperative electronic mechanisms that are
> publicly archived for reasons of accessibility, transparency, repeatability
> and "fairness". Mailing lists have a flame problem, the incoming queue does
> not. The fact that mailinglists have flames does not undermine the argument
> that electronic systems can be more efficient than expensive physical
> meetings.

Yes there should be accessible documentation for what all the teams are
upto and electronic systems could automate a lot of that. But eventually
someone has to monitor the electronic systems and then we are right back
to square one.  Only those with an inordinate amount of time will be able
monitor everything.  Those without time will have to choose the particular
bits they are informed about and will be at sea and unhelpful on the bits
they don't know about.

> There is also no guarantee that people will be nice at face-to-face meetings.
> There is even the possibility that some motivated party (ie. Unabomber++)
> might take it on themselves to blow a DebConf to kingdom come.

Come on let's be realistic now.  There's no guarantee but people _are_
nice at face-to-face meetings.


> Sounds more like a recipe for being mugged repeatedly by street gangs and
> hiding fearfully in your house. Might even throw a nice raping in there for
> good measure. I hear that's popular with lawless warlord types.

You missed the low-intensity part.  In fact it is basically the idea
behind the US consitutions systems of checks and balances.  Or
alternatively look at the Mafia's system which by "organizing"  crime
actually substantially reduced the amount of killing and risk to innocent
bystanders.  Yet the tribal nature of the Mafia family prevented the
"commission" from degenerating into a bureaucracy -- which is just as
inimical to liberty as anarchy.

Jaldhar H. Vyas <jaldhar@debian.org>
La Salle Debain - http://www.braincells.com/debian/

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