External dependencies [was: Re: Moduleset reorg, new draft]

[breaking the thread]

I wrote:

> Actually I thought it could gain a paragraph or two on the purpose of
> external dependencies, but I don't have anything to propose, and don't
> want to hold this anylonger.

Back when the concept was introduced external dependencies consisted
of modules that were already stable, packaged in distributions, that
just could well be built from known working tarballs, instead of
tracking their latest commits.

This also insured the release team didn't have to chase unknown people
(eg ptlib/opal maintainers) for tarballs when a GNOME release had to

It's obvious external dependencies were later subverted for another
purpose, as module maintainers needed some features, got them from
some recent library, but that library didn't get proposed as an
official module. Hence we get ourselves building things like
libsocialweb (to take the latest example) from tarballs, they get
broken by changes down in the stack, they are actively developed and
module maintainers use features as they are introduced, making GNOME
unbuildable, etc.

I still do not have a concrete proposal on this, but I'd like to see
this discussed in our next meeting, or on this list, whatever.



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