stwbeast, merge requests and timeout merges


Beast has not seen a release since quite a while, partially because Tim (the
maintainer of the beast git tree) has been busy with other things, partially
because problems for which the fix is known have not been fixed because the
solution (as patch) has been available in the bug tracker or as private mail,
but wasn't merged into the main tree.

To fix this situation, I've started my own development tree: stwbeast. It
contains various fixes as seperate - easy to merge - branch. I encourage
users and developers to look if there is a stwbeast fix for any problem
they have, test it, and give feedback. If it doesn't work, or if I messed
things up while trying to fix a bug, please let me know.

I've created a page:

which contains an overview of the branches in the stwbeast repo. My intention
is to keep fixing bugs and adding features in the stwbeast repo first, then
get it merged or merge it into the main tree.

To get review (from Tim or from you, the developers/users), the following
process is used to merge from stwbeast to the beast git tree:

1. I create a branch in stwbeast, and implement a bugfix (in this case, the
   branch name will be bug-437469 or similar), or feature

2. when the branch is in a state where I think it should be merged, a merge
   request is send to the list (CC Tim); the subject will be

   MERGE: stwbeast.git bug-437469 [Doxer support for bullet lists in man pages]

   or similar

3. if there is a reply, discussions can start; however, if there is no reply
   within three weeks, I send a timeout merge request:

   TIMEOUT MERGE: stwbeast.git bug-437469 [Doxer support for bullet lists in man pages]

   to the list (CC Tim)

4. if there is no reply after another week, I'll merge the branch into the main

This means that for any stwbeast bug fix or feature, there is a four week time
window for feedback after the initial merge request, and if there is no
objection within this time, the change will be merged to the main tree. I hope
that this new development model will end the de-facto-freeze state of the beast
repo and bring us back to an open source "bazaar" style development model.

   Cu... Stefan
Stefan Westerfeld, Hamburg/Germany,

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