Re: Design by Community

On Wed, 2006-02-08 at 15:36 +1100, Jeff Waugh wrote:
> <quote who="Dan Winship">
> > But it seems to me now that everyone other than me (and possibly Jono) is
> > actually talking about Xgl, and I have no comment on that.
> > 
> > (OTOH, if you really were saying that Novell's writing a replacement for
> > the panel menu was "commons-sapping, community-tearing, morally and
> > intellectually lazy", then by all means, let me know so I can write a
> > suitably rude reply. :)
> I was not talking exclusively about Novell, Xgl, or the new panel applet. I
> was talking about a serious problem in our community, and the destructive
> ideas, memes and role models that support it.

Isn't what we got here exactly what has been asked for? That 'big'
changes to GNOME needs to come from 'outside' projects? Havoc for
instance was advocating that in his blog entries. So if people are
unhappy about XYZ in GNOME, for instance the current panel. Due to it
being so business critical we can't have experimentation going on in the
gnome-panel CVS head, so 'radical' changes would need to be done as a
separate project, and if it turns out good then it will at some point
replace the current module.

There is also a lot that gets thrown away, and I guess people don't want
to spend time discussing UI and so on about something which might not
ever get used outside their own machine, for instance someone mentioned
the Novell Network applet, which afaik ended up in the dustbin and
Novell started contributing to NetworkManager instead. 

That said I think the 'problem' of endless debates on desktop-devel in
regards to actual development is overstated. 90% of endless debates on
this list is not about module xyz, but about general policy issues like
this one.

If we want to get (back) to a situation where more gung-ho stuff happens
in our core modules I think we need to do a couple of things. Like
increase module maintainers freedom again (at the cost of the release
team for instance) and accept that if radical changes happens to module
XYZ the maintainer of that module is more free to ignore any criticism
no matter who is giving it. So if the Nautilus maintainers decide that
file manager windows should be circle shaped and not square for instance
the rest of us have to accept that.


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