Re: Second draft (was Re: we need a release announcement -- soon [source material])
So what I tried to do (and it should work well as I'm just waking up)
is read this announcement as if I was one of the slashdot hordes, or
anyone else not too technically inclined, skimming Yet Another
Unimportant Release Anouncement. My aims were to see if it was too long,
and if it got the important points out there first, where the casual
skimmer will see them.
> Debian 2.2 Released
> The Debian Project is pleased to announce the latest release of the
> Debian GNU/Linux Operating System, version 2.2 (codename "potato").
> This release has been in development for approximately 18 months, and
> has been extensively continuously tested by several thousand
> developers and end-users; accordingly, we believe Debian 2.2 is an
> extremely well-tested Linux distribution ever.
> As in previous releases, Debian 2.2 uses our proven dpkg package
> manager to provide the most thorough dependency protection available
> in Linux distributions. We continue to provide the alien package for
> installation of packages in other formats, but you'll rarely need it;
> we have installers available for many third-party packages that are
> distributed by others.
> Perhaps the most significant change in Debian 2.2 is our transition to
> version 2.1.3 of the GNU C Library (also known as libc 6.1). Debian
> 2.2 also includes the latest stable Linux kernel (2.2.16), updated
> with Alan Cox's patches expected to go into 2.2.17. The 2.2 kernel
> series includes significant improvements in usability and stability;
> it also includes more hardware support, for both older and newer
> products; laptop users will particularly notice improvements in the
> PCMCIA subsystem.
> Debian 2.2 includes over 1200 new packages of software; in addition,
> nearly 800 existing packages have been updated since Debian 2.1. Some
> of the most significant changes are:
> * New packages:
> + postfix - A new secure mail transport agent developed at
> + openssh - A free implementation of the secure shell,
> by the OpenBSD project.
> + openldap - LDAP client and server packages, including
> bindings to C, Perl, and Python.
Once I got to this list, and especially the one below it, I was feeling
overwhelmed by complxity. There's too much data here. I think the average
skimmer would stop reading about here. What will they have read?
- New debian 2.2
- Tested forever
- Some alien thing
- New libc and kernel
I'm not sure these are our core messages for this announcement. I think
our core messages are:
- New debian 2.2, dedicated to Joel.
- What it's all about, and a human interest angle.
- What is Debian
-- Because not everyone knows.
- Simplified install, with DHCP and stuff
-- This get the clueless hordes at least thinking about giving it a
- 2 new achitectures: powerpc and arm (run Debian on your netwinder or
<some common supported ppc system>)
-- This gets people using those arch's interested.
- Same easy upgrades as always
-- This gives existing users a push to upgrade.
- Where to get Debian
-- So anyone we've interested now moves on to giving it a look.
We have a secondary message that is explaining all the nifty new stuff
that is in potato, but I think it's clearly a secondary message. It's
only going to interest people who are existing users who are considering
upgrading Debian, and either arn't sure, or want something to read while
they're waiting for apt to download potato, plus perhaps people who
don't use Debian yet but are interested to see what we're doing that's
so special. As such, this part should be kept fairly short.
In general, then, this announcement needs to be trimmed down. It needs
to have the most important points moved to the top. It needs each
paragraph to start with an important point, on the assumption that that
is all some people will be reading.
I'm going to try to write a draft incorporating these ideas today.
see shy jo