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Re: Question restated



> Yes.  By making reference to my SPI Treasurer work, I was endeavoring to
> illustrate how, in many respects, I've already done so.  Maybe it's just
> me, but I think this is a better approach than glib testimonials about
> how "yes, I'll be a good boy in the future".

True, point taken and I do feel you've been doing a good job as SPI
treasurer, BTW.  And I think you've done an amazing job with X, too,
despite being harsh with people from time to time - you've definitely
backed up the talk with action.
 
> That's true, but I think we also need to let our project leaders be
> human from time to time, as well.
 
Certainly, I expect our leaders to fall somewhere _between_ human and
maniac ;-) And one of the things I'm struggling with is that our project
could use a strong and vocal leader, and I know you would do that for our
project.  On the other hand, I don't recall "frequently pisses people off"
as one of the "7 habits of highly effective people" or whatever, and so I'm
mulling it over a bit.  I didn't ask the original question, and I'm
guessing there are a few others out there who have the same questions and
concerns.

> I can think of times when Bruce Perens, Ian Jackson, Wichert Akkerman,
> and Ben Collins have all blown their tops on the mailing lists or in the
> Debian Bug Tracking System, to some degree or another.  I don't think
> their reputations -- or Debian's -- have suffered terribly as a result.

I do recall Bruce Perens having some fairly shocking outbursts, the most
shocking of which was when he quit the project.  I'd say that was in a
class of its own, actually.  While I'm sure that Ian, Wichert, and Ben have
had their own moments, none of them have stuck in my mind.  Your vocal
personality, on the other hand, is what defines you in my mind in addition
to the good work that you've done.

> I do not think the DPL campaign period should come to resemble Senate
> confirmation hearings for federal judgeships in the United States, where
> the totality of a nominee's past statements are dredged in excruciating
> detail for humiliating soundbites.

I'm not interested in such an activity either.  But I do realize the DPL is
kind of a figure-head for the project, so to some degree personality is
important to me in making my own choice.
 
> Project Leaders aren't angels, and shouldn't be held to unreasonably
> strict standards of conduct.  More to the point, I don't think the current
> crop of DPL candidates should be held to higher standards than the
> former officeholders have been. 

Does that mean that we're supposed to go by precedent?  If so, we'd better
start being _really_ conservative in our choices, don't you think?
(Playing devil's advocate here.)

> In short, I think I can match the standards of decorum set by our recent
> Project Leaders.  They've set a fine example.

This is the statement that I was looking for.  
 
> I agree that it was moment of weakness on my part -- and I'll work to
> minimize those in the future regardless of the outcome of this election
> -- but I'd like to ask you if you think this sort of email is unique to
> me among the Debian Developers generally or among past and present Debian
> Project Leaders in particular. 

My own impression is that Bruce is the only other DPL that has come close.
See my comments below, where I admit I could be wrong.

> If you're going to hold me -- or this year's group of candidates -- to a
> different standard than the one established to date, then I suggest that
> your mechanism for evaluating us is biased.

Of course it's biased - I as a project member am human like you and
everyone else.

Having said that, I don't buy your argument here for two reasons.  The
first is that project has evolved and will continue to.  When Bruce was
DPL, Debian was not yet a real force - Linux barely was for that matter.
At the point that the project was so small we needed someone with a loud
mouth to get things done.

My perception of the other DPLs besides Bruce has been that they have been
much less publically offensive.  I don't irc, so most of my opinion is
based on postings to mail lists, and I might have missed it if they acted
in a similar fashion somewhere else.

Each leader has had their good and bad points, and not all of them were
very public in their execution of their duties.  Perhaps to the point that
they seemed ineffective (I don't mean all of them here, but I'm not going
to name any names).  What makes you an interesting candidate is that I'm
sure you would be noticable as a DPL :-)

I don't want anyone - including you - to take this as any kind of attack.
As I stated early, I feel that having a strong and vocal leader would be
good for the project at this point in time.  It's ready to be shaken up bit
as we're getting pretty far into a period of uncontrolled growth, and we
need to address some things.  The statements you've made are actually the
kind of reassurance that I was looking for.

Later,
	Dale
-- 
Dale E. Martin, Clifton Labs, Inc.
Senior Computer Engineer
dmartin@cliftonlabs.com
http://www.cliftonlabs.com
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