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Re: Reforming the NM process

On Wed, Apr 12, 2006 at 10:57:46PM -0500, Manoj Srivastava wrote:
> > For instance, for voting, I think the process of establishing the
> > identity of one's PGP key should be enough.  If Debian wants to
> > continue as a technical meritocracy, the votes could be weighed with
> > the "amount of contribution" that person has done for Debian.
>         The weights, currently, are 0, and 1.0.

... but they don't reflect very much the amount of contribution people
have made.

On Thu, Apr 13, 2006 at 09:14:36AM +0200, Raphael Hertzog wrote:
> > requiring the packaging and making available of open source software to
> > be a hierarchic, rigid process, we are essentially taking that freedom
> > away.
> You can create (Debian) packages outside of Debian if you're not happy
> with Debian.

Yes, and I do.  Besides, I'm happy with Debian, and my happiness with
Debian (or lack of it) is not the reason why my packages are not in

Now seriously, the reasons why a package in Debian is quite different
from a Debian package outside of Debian should be well-known enough:
ease of search and use for users and infrastructure for packaging (such
as the BTS).

> > I think the Debian project should adopt a totally different approach to
> > trust.  The BTS is open to external contributors; why isn't the software
> > archive?
> Can you just go on samba.org and upload your own archive ? No. It's the
> same for debian.org ... if you want to put something on debian.org, you
> have to follow the rules of Debian.

Yes, and I'm very much inclined to do so.  (I'm not all that much into
cracking into public servers... :))  Given the kind of community Debian
is, however, I'm lead to believe that a different set of rules would
serve the community (and me, but not just me) better.  That is, I'm
trying to contribute to the rules.  I might be wrong, but I'd be even
more wrong if I didn't say what I think.

Of course I admit that if no one (or not too many) agrees with me that a
totally different approach to developership would serve freedom, the
Debian community and the open source community better, I just have to
obey the rules the community sees better fit.

> > Furthermore, it seems unfair that NM's have more stringent requirements
> > than existing DD's.  For instance, NM's must invest their time in pseudo
> The NM process may have been more lax and accepted DD which are nowadays
> causing problems due to their lack of social skills for example.
> Don't you think we have a right to improve by being more selective?

I do think we have the _right_, I just think it won't work.
Furthermore, what I was saying is that those DD's are doing great work
in spite of alleged lack of social skills, and that entering Debian (or
instead almost any volunteer community) should not be prevented by a
lack of social skills.

> > Let me add that the pre-NM process also has problems.  They are probably
> > not so much problems from the point-of-view of AM's (since they need not
> > get involved with that process at all), but when somebody enters the
> > lengthy NM process, they may already have a lot of frustrating searching
> > and futile attempts at contacting people.
> And what about helping people who wants to improve that instead of
> complaining ?

I can do that, but can't you see that the very e-mail you replied to is
part of those efforts?  I'm not complaining for complaining's sake; I'm
proposing new ways to arrange things.  That's a contribution even though
it's not a technical one.

> - write some tools to facilitate review and sponsorship
> - use SVN repo for contributors so that we can see their work
>   over time
> - web interface to follow the set of packages (with a lit "need upload",
>   "need review", etc.)
> http://wiki.debian.org/CollaborativeMaintenance

Nice to see projects like this.  It won't help the problem, though, that
there still need to be sponsors and there are too few of them.  I lack
the sponsor point of view, but the existing infrastructure in Debian for
sponsorship is already very good IMO.  By making sponsorship easier we
can improve things but only up to a point.

> > achieve that is to educate people.  The act of teaching not only
> > benefits the trainee, but also the trainer.  A proper teaching procedure
> > will deepen the understanding of both parties on the subject matter.
> NM process is not about teaching, we don't have the resources for that

To me it seems to be vice versa: I've received a lot of friendly
teaching on debian-mentors@l.d.o, but no sponsors :)

> currently. (I teached myself ... with documentation, questions on
> appropriate ML, etc.)

This is how I supposed it to be and I was amazed by the amount of advice
I received when all I was asking for was sponsors.  This is good, of
course, but your attitude seems wrong to me: as if the problem was in
the aspiring NM if people give feedback to him/her.

> For the rest, you're dreaming, we're not going to give vote rights
> instantly. It doesn't make any sense. 

Probably not, although I doubt there's anything horribly wrong with it.
But I would give vote rights instantly, so who is this "we" you're
talking about?


personal contact:	panu.kalliokoski@helsinki.fi, +35841 5323835
technical contact:	atehwa@iki.fi, http://www.iki.fi/atehwa/
PGP fingerprint:	0EA5 9D33 6590 FFD4 921C  5A5F BE85 08F1 3169 70EC

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