Re: [Fwd: Re: Problem with Dia Website]


Do you have a question about using the program that I can help answer?

Regarding the website, you can be sure that the developers have read your question.  My guess is that they have higher priorities - regular full time day jobs and such that put food on the table.  It is not really my place to speak for the developers, but suddenly we have a group of needy newcomers so I will put put in my own perspective as a user of Dia.

Dia is a really good open source program.  But like many open source programs it is "self serve" to some extent.  Like a vending machine.  Sometimes you want it do dispense crackers, and it only wants to deliver chocolate.  You stick a post it note on the glass, and hope it is fixed in the next few days.  Standing in front of it repeating questions when the service guy is miles away is silly.  He will return when it is time and respond.

Dia gets regular attention by the developers.  Compared to many I use, these guys are the very best - very regular, very effective, and even personable.  The archives of the mailing list can give some perspective on this. 

Dia is good at the things it is good at right now.  People regularly use it, they are productive and without much help from the developers.  You can have faith that things are OK even if you don't get an instant response to a question.  In this case, a report of a website malfunction, an acknowledgment is not required, simply reporting it is sufficient (and even appreciated, if no one rubs it in).  Someone will try to fix it when they can.  There are a number of non-developers on the list who will answer specific questions about using the program.  I wouldn't be able to help with the website so I didn't respond.  Not all the developers work on the website is my guess, so the specific people who work on the website have to have time to see and respond to the message for anything to appear to happen.  Patience is required.  Note the malfunction, and if nothing happens in a week, then try again. 

I recently read a very good article on linux and open source in general ( I forgot to bookmark it though) explaining the differences between this paradigm and the commercial paradigm.  There is a regular problem of cross purposes between new users who are accustomed to commercial software, and the developers and experienced users of open source software.  There is an expectation of response to questions, requests for fixing problems, and requests for enhancements on one hand.  On the other you have generous part time people who know the software very well, are pretty happy with how it works at the moment, and who if they are answering questions are not developing the software or are simply putting food on the table by the usual non-open source means.  There is no paid tech support.

My suggestion to new users is to be patient.  Use the mailing list to ask specific questions about the program.  There is a bug reporting system. (Yesterday there was a message from Lars thanking someone for actually using that.)  Conversation about how things can improve are useful, but can't really take place in the bug reporting system, so learning to use the bug reporting system is a good idea.  If no one is making conversation that is because they are busy doing something else of a higher priority. Like maybe a vacation, who knows. 

This is not a corporation, it is a loose and informal community of benefactors and supplicants.  I would say that we supplicants should try to act that way, or learn the skills to become benefactors, and be grateful for what we have.

In the case of Dia that is really quite a lot.  It is not perfect, but it is the best that some very hard work has been able to make it.  If we don't wear our benefactors out we won't become devotees of an orphaned program.


2008/2/11 Ricardo Larrañaga <rrl adinet com uy>:
Hi. Did someone got the chance to see my question about dia? i forward
it here. If someone can help me with this, i'll be gratefull
Ricardo Larrañaga

---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: Ricardo Larrañaga <rrl adinet com uy>
To: discussions about usage and development of dia <dia-list gnome org>
Date: Fri, 08 Feb 2008 23:35:31 -0300
Subject: Re: Problem with Dia Website
John King III wrote:
> I've been getting that error as well. I'm a newb as well though.
> On Feb 8, 2008 3:08 PM, Claudio Pascalis <claudio_p gmx de
> <mailto:claudio_p gmx de>> wrote:
>     Hi,
>     sorry if somebody has already speak about this, but I'm new to
>     this list.
>     Has anybody a Problem with the website of dia too?
>     If I want to load the site of "About","News",... from the menu I
>     get an error that says
>     "Import Error" :(
>     greetings
>     Claudio
>     _______________________________________________
>     Dia-list mailing list
>     Dia-list gnome org <mailto:Dia-list gnome org>
>     FAQ at
>     Main page at
> ------------------------------------------------------------------------
> _______________________________________________
> Dia-list mailing list
> Dia-list gnome org
> FAQ at
> Main page at
I have been getting that error too.

Dia-list mailing list
Dia-list gnome org
FAQ at
Main page at

Michael Ross
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