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Re: non-free?

On Mon, Mar 24, 2014 at 04:58:22PM -0700, Russ Allbery wrote:
> If one of our upstreams said that they wanted to rename a public API
> in a widely-used shared library because they thought the old name
> wasn't very accurate, we would almost certainly beg them not to, due
> to all of the pain this would cause for marginal benefit.  I encourage
> people to think of the archive URLs in the same light.  If anything,
> the pain is even worse.

Just a side comment on this: your reasoning here is valid for full blown
API renames, because they break backward compatibility.  But the
reasoning does not apply to: add a new public API, document it, preserve
backward compatibility for the old API, drop the documentation for the
old API --- in your analogy, it is this second option the closest to my
(very) long term evil plan behind non-free.org.

You will probably disagree that there is value in such an exercise,
which is merely at the communication level, and which had never even
been really promoted (yet). But this second criticism is definitely not
in the realm of inflicting pain to existing users.

Stefano Zacchiroli  . . . . . . .  zack@upsilon.cc . . . . o . . . o . o
Maître de conférences . . . . . http://upsilon.cc/zack . . . o . . . o o
Former Debian Project Leader  . . @zack on identi.ca . . o o o . . . o .
« the first rule of tautology club is the first rule of tautology club »

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