Re: About GNOME 2.0 - The end of a dream

Miguel de Icaza <miguel ximian com> writes: 
> The obvious answer is `yes', because that is the hip thing to do.  But
> in reality that is not the case.  Things are evaluated by maintainers,
> and maintainers get to make the last choice.

The problem with that is that in this case the whole argument was
between two maintainers who knew a lot about config systems.
So I think it's kind of wrong to say "maintainers decide," that didn't
work in this case.

> Having a formal process where people with slim evidence, and more time
> to argue than to read source code and understand the problem is the
> wrong thing to do.

So what is your alternative suggestion? Who should have decided in
this specific case? (Or who _should_ decide, if we still haven't

I just want to try and come up with some concrete course of action to
solve this problem and similar ones in the future.

I think the real root cause of the problem we have here is that
there's this thing called GNOME which is the sum of many modules, and
decisions for one module affect the others. So punting things to
individual module maintainers really doesn't work.

For major GNOME-wide decisions such as what config system to use, I
think we need some process that involves first public RFCs/writeups
(similar to the PEP things Python uses), these don't have to be
formal, they are just a text file where you document the case for a
given course of action. The RFC gets posted to a mailing list and
discussed. People may develop alternative or conflicting RFCs. The
RFCs are discussed over a reasonable amount of time. Then either the
board or a delegate of the board such as the release coordinators or a
group of designated maintainers would accept or reject each RFC.

That's basically what Python does, and I think isn't too different
from what several other projects do as well. It does not usurp
maintainers, it only applies to decisions which span GNOME as a whole.

Maybe this sounds too bureaucratic, though I don't think it does. But
if you think it does, I'd like to hear what other suggestions you


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