Re: roadmap status update/update request

Stabilizing software is a more worthwhile endeavor than attending
feature requests, some of which are unreasonable. Sometimes, users
think they know what's best for them, when they don't. By their very
nature, features and/or enhancements take a back seat to bugs that
make software unstable or unreliable. If you are a software developer,
would you rather focus on adding features, or work on squashing bugs
that make your software unreliable?

Comparing Microsoft's and Apple's development process to free software
development is short sighted. You pay big bucks to run Microsoft's and
Apple's software. They have engineers scoring hundreds of thousands of
dollars a year to pretend they are solving your problems. They have
R&D laboratories, support personnel, massively over engineered bug
tracking systems, teams of "experts" working on your software, to
mention a few. For Microsoft and Apple, software making is a business.
They add your features because you pay them to. This is assuming they
listen to you.

Developing free software is not a business. Many developers work on
this project for free and in their spare time out of their love for
hacking, to scratch an itch, out of pride, or to satisfy controversial
philosophies, such as software freedom. Free software development is
community oriented. It doesn't work by people yelling, "add this
feature," "add that feature," "I'm mad because developer X is arrogant
as she didn't add the feature I want." You don't dictate in free
software. You participate. You become a part of the community. You
earn respect as a valued contributor to the community. You impress the
community. Then perhaps if you yell "add this feature" it will be
taken seriously. That's how free software development works.

Free software developers are nobody's slave. You can't force them to
work on an aspect of a project they do not consider high priority. The
only thing you can do is convince them beyond rationality and logic,
that a feature is desperately needed. This convincing and persuasion
takes skills. Havoc already mentioned some of them. Needless to say,
the user has to do a lot of homework and do as much as possible to
make the developers life easier if the user wants to see a feature in
the project. Yes, that includes bribing them. :-) If all else fails,
fork the project.

Now with regards to patches going unattended for extended periods of
time, I think it is discouraging, and such projects only loose
valuable contributors. Once again, this is community, not business.

On Mon, 07 Mar 2005 11:14:45 -0800, Eugenia Loli-Queru
<eloli hotmail com> wrote:
> >I've seen hundreds of web polls
> The idea was that this would be a Gnome-sponsored poll and it would attract
> people from many sites, not just osnews or this mailing list. The idea would
> be to get at least 300,000 people vote (I can get you 50-60,000 voters out
> of the 250,000 daily osnews readers, the rest must be done via ml, slashdot,
> gnomedesktop etc). I think that's a way better number of people
> participating than MOST commercial companies would ever dream of to make a
> market research on. They usually do their researches based on a sample of
> 2-3,000 people. Gnome would have 100 times that, and so I do take it that it
> would be accurate "enough". Besides, with my poll experiences on osnews, the
> polls do seem to be representative of what most people want.
> >I'm interested in what your features are
> I don't want to fill up the mailing list with my 20 feature requests, and so
> I will be sending you a private email.
> >But I'm not going to be surprised or think it reflects any fundamental
> >breakage in GNOME if nobody gets around to those features.
> No, they are not breaking anything. It's not the Gnome 3.0 time yet, so I am
> being realistic in my requests. ;-)
> [Jamie]
> >(perhaps OSnews can fund some of these from its ad revenue?)
> It would, if OSNews was mine. But it ain't. OSNews belongs to an ex-Red Hat
> manager and I had to ask for permission to donate the 5 osnews ad-free
> subscriptions for the Novell bounties 2 days ago.
> As for (also belongs to the same person), AFAIK it doesn't
> make more than $70 per month from the ads, and that's barely enough to pay
> for its bandwidth (Gnomefiles now serves 24,000 pageviews daily on average).
> It ain't the 1999 days anymore for big ad revenue, unfortunately. :-/
> Eugenia
> _______________________________________________
> desktop-devel-list mailing list
> desktop-devel-list gnome org

"My logic is undeniable."

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