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Re: Questions to the candidates

On Wed, Mar 08, 2006 at 08:16:34AM +0100, Martin Schulze wrote:
> I'd like to ask some questions to the prospecitve project leaders:
> 1. Which are Debians top five strengths in your opinion?

In no particular order:

  Breadth -- we include everything we can, and support whoever we can
  Freedom -- we're very focussed on free software
  Openness -- anybody can see what we're doing
  Quality -- we have good tools and policies and work to maintain them
  Volunteerism -- we're not dependent on a funding source or a business plan

> 2. Where do you identify Debians top five problems?

  Conflict -- we focus on and exaggerate disagreements to the point where they
              hinder improvement
  Hurdles to contributing -- helping out in many areas is difficult, from the
              time and effort to go through n-m, to getting involved in various
              subparts of the project after you're a developer; not all of those 
              hurdles are useful
  Indecisiveness -- we leave things unresolved for extended periods
  Lack of momentum -- continual improvement begets continual improvement, and
              that needs to happen at all levels of the proejct

> 3. Do you plan to do anything to change the public recognition that
>    Debian suffers from severe release problems and that its stable
>    distribution is generally outdated?  If so, what?

In so far as Debian does have severe release problems, or its stable
distribution is generally outdated, I think the public _should_ have
that perception. And as far as fixing that perception goes, I think we
should fix the underlying problem first, before we expect people to stop
thinking there's a problem.

That said, I think we're making good progress on that in three ways:
first, the release team have a good plan and support for ensuring
that past problems don't repeat themselves -- including ensuring that
architectures don't have ongoing problems, that the installer remains
working properly, and that the security infrastructure is working for
etch at release time; second, I think the d-i beta releases for etch can
fairly easily be enhanced into something suitable for people who want
significantly more frequent releases; and finally I think the stable
point releases should be significantly more controllable by 3.1r3,
as per the other thread.

> 4. In light of the well organised presence of Skolelinux and the
>    professional presence of Ubuntu at several conferences and exhibitions
>    do you believe Debian is represented adequately?

I can't comment specifically; but in general I'd say that Debian should
be represented as well as people want to represent it -- if there are
blockages there, such as an inability to get permission to use the Debian
trademark, or availability of funds, or ability to announce a presence
and find and coordinate people to do the promotion, then that's bad. If
it's just that people don't think conferences or exhibitions are worth
the effort, it's not such a problem.

> 5. Do you see any services for our users or developers missing or
>    poorly maintained?  If so, which and what do you plan to do to
>    fix this?

I've done this in the past, and expect to keep doing so whether elected or
not. I guess I don't really see the point of the question.

> 6. What is your opinion about the current situation with the backports
>    and volatile archives?  Currently they don't run on projects assets.

I'd like to see them integrated into the archive, much as we had a
separate section for backports to bo when the libc6 transition was
underway. There are various concerns with doing that, many of which I
hope the mirror split will mostly alleviate.

> 7. What is your opinion about the current situation with the snapshot
>    archive?  Currently it doesn't run on projects assets.

It's a useful service. TTBOMK we don't have any debian.org machines
that would be suitable to host it, but that's something you (as DSA)
can probably answer better than I can anyway; I know I've seen concerns
expressed about having machines not running Debian hosting it, as far as
"debian.org" status is concerned.


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