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Re: this post is not off-topic


Nice of you to respond. Although your response seems rather overheated, I
think it contains the core of a argument to which I can respond, so I'm
going to try...

> We have decided to release for 11 architectures, because that
> pleases our muse.

Point 4. of http://www.debian.org/social_contract says "Our Priorities are
Our Users and Free Software". I think even you will agree that, prima
facie, my argument for optimizing the greatest possible user good looks
more consistent with these priorities than your statement above.

Do you really believe that the Debian community should not "worry about
the rate of return of our effort"? Your argument seems to be that we
should not do so, because Microsoft does so (therefore it must be bad?).

I think the Debian leadership made a mistake in its decision to support
more architectures than Debian could without negatively impacting the
mainstream base. Amid mounting criticism from the user base, the posture
of many of those invested in that decision has been to adopt a cabal-like
attitude ("this is our project and we deign to let you use it") rather
than to try to reach out to the community. Frankly, your statement above
is exemplary in this regard. I'm afraid that route will lead use away from
the free-for-all, inclusive Linux world toward the high quality, but
rather austere and unfriendly BSD world.

>  please collect the refunds at the door.

I think you are wrong to dismiss me, and so many other Debian users like
me, out of hand. I run a large number of Debian machines, including web,
file, directory, and email servers, and a computation cluster. I report
bugs regularly and work with maintainers to squash them. I participate in
debian-user. I maintain a collection (http://www.metaconsultancy.com) of
Debian-centric whitepapers. I would be happy to maintain packages, if one
of the ones with which I am familiar were to become orphaned. If that
doesn't make me a member of the Debian community with a legitimate
interest in the direction Debian takes, then Debian already is a cabal.

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