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From Jeff Turner <j...@socialchange.net.au>
Subject Re: [ADMIN] process for applying patches
Date Sat, 04 Nov 2000 04:27:44 GMT

I think this is a general problem with popular open source projects. Each
project has to get the committer:contributor ratio right. Assuming Cocoon
has the right ratio, but still experiences problems...

A possible solution: ordinary cocoon-devvers "register" themselves as
interested in certain parts of Cocoon. If you a) understand the general
architecture, and b) understand what file X.java does, register your
interest. When someone proposes a patch to X.java, those registered can
review the patch. If the patch looks good, reviewers +1 it on this list.
When a real committer has a chance to review the patch, they can have much
more confidence in the quality of the patch. Committers can concentrate on
whether a patch violates design issues, rather than simpler implementation
issues.

To implement this system, we could set up a web site where people register
themselves as reviewers, and indicate which files they are interested in.
Then if I modify X.java, I can look up who's registered as reviewers and
send the patch to them (in addition to cocoon-dev). There can be an online
voting system, where reviewers who do their job well get recognised
(possibly leading to commit access), and those who don't get automatically
removed after a few -1's. The whole system can work without any
intervention from the cocoon maintainers.

Building such a system might be a nice little open source project on it's
own :)

Would all this work? Who knows.. there is no harm in trying. It's a way in
which ordinary folks can help ease the load on committers.

--Jeff


On Fri, 3 Nov 2000, Ovidiu Predescu wrote:

> I have a simple question, which might have wider implications though: how do
> patches get applied to the source code?
> 
> I submitted a few patches in the past few weeks but received comments only on a
> few of them. Are they good? Do they fit nicely in the Cocoon framework? Nobody
> seems to care about this or to take any action. This is quite amazing to me, is
> the first free software/open-source project I work on where people don't seem
> to be preoccupied analyzing other people's patches and do something about them.
> 
> Until now Stefano was the one in charge with the management of this project.
> What happens after his departure? Who is going to take the responsibility of
> accepting new contributions? Successful free software and open-source projects
> like the Linux kernel or the GCC compilers suite have a few individuals that
> analyze the proposed patches and accept or reject them. If we want to be
> successful in this project we need to setup a similar thing. I realize that
> this is an open-source project and it might eat a substantial amount of time
> from somebody's time to do it. But we have to find the resources to do it,
> otherwise new contributions are going to be lost or people will get bored
> submitting contributions nobody is analyzing.
> 
> I managed to convince the group I work in here at HP that we should use Cocoon
> in some of our projects; it was a hard thing. An even harder thing was
> convincing them that is worth contributing back to the project our changes. Now
> that I managed to do it, hardly anybody seems to care about the contributions.
> I think it would be a shame if these and any other contributions don't get at
> least discussed if not accepted.
> 
> Maybe the people that have CVS commit access can come up with a way to look at
> all these contributions and decide on whether they fit in the Cocoon framework
> so they accept them or they don't, in which case they reject them. I strongly
> feel we need to have such a process in place.
> 
> What are your thoughts on this?
> 
> Regards,
> -- 
> Ovidiu Predescu <ovidiu@cup.hp.com>
> http://orion.nsr.hp.com/ (inside HP's firewall only)
> http://www.geocities.com/SiliconValley/Monitor/7464/
> 
> 



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