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From "Rahul Akolkar" <>
Subject [all] Line width and such minutiae
Date Tue, 28 Mar 2006 06:59:32 GMT
On 3/27/06, Rahul Akolkar <> wrote:
> On 3/27/06, Sandy McArthur <> wrote:
> > > P.S.- [pool] code is quite hard to read with all that horizontal
> > > scrolling. Irrespective of the code already in place, maybe we should
> > > stick to a reasonable (80?) character line width for new code?
> >
> > The code I contribute to apache is code I wrote for pleasure. The code
> > I contribute is in the form that was most pleasurable for me to write
> > in. I impose no restrictions on how others choose to write their code.
> > If you wish to compensate me to write code differently or reject my
> > contributions because of such trivial issues, that is fine. The ASL
> > grants anyone the right reformat ASL licensed code however they see
> > fit. I only request that I am not stripped of attribution for my
> > contributions.

The comment wasn't about imposing restrictions, that would never work
anyway. Even while writing for pleasure, a lot of components still
check for style (I think its valuable). The line width style criteria
has some valid reasons, not the least of which is its accessibility
implication that those more fortunate tend to not realize. So, I am
implicitly -0 for any *new* commits that are needlessly and
consistently too wide which indicates my personal preference (a -1
ofcourse would be an attempt to impose a restriction). And I will
always respect your opinion, even if it doesn't match mine.
Compensation never comes to my mind in face of any discussions on
these mailing lists, that bit was a no-brainer.

As a sidebar, since attribution got mentioned -- its an old, widely
discussed topic at the ASF. Some of us believe that author tags in
source code are a distraction (doesn't mean we want everyone to change
their opinion). It has to do with issues arising out of how you define
the least unit of work that warrants an author tag, the tedium of
having to remember to add an author tag while applying a patch, and
issues of fairness (should the author tags be ordered by size of
contribution to the source file, name, chronology). A lot of older
projects traditionally had author tags, so its more effort to
discontinue, but for newer projects, I personally have begun to prefer
the no author tags policy. Accordingly, I will likely -1 a patch to
the [scxml] code if the author insists on having an author tag. And
maybe that means [scxml] will miss out on some valuable contributions
from talented folks purely for that reason, but that is perhaps "the
lesser of the two evils". Attribution then, gets handled via commit
messages and the team page. All commit messages contain attribution as
the case may be, and anyone who contributes any code -- be it a line
or a million -- gets listed on the team page.

I find listening to the variety of opinions on almost all things here
at the ASF makes me richer.


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