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From "Dennis E. Hamilton" <dennis.hamil...@acm.org>
Subject "I'd Really Like This Done By Friday"
Date Fri, 13 Feb 2015 09:14:27 GMT
There is a great lessons-learned article at 
<http://jasonpunyon.com/blog/2015/02/12/providence-failure-is-always-an-option/>.

Joel Spolski, whose company supports Stack Exchange, made this comment in his twitter message
about it:

"Now you know why experienced developers are really conservative about technology choices."

My reason for remarking on this, beside it being a great story, is the "I'd Really Like This
Done By Friday"  topic on the very end.  I notice that we do not seem to have very many places
in Corinthia, right now, where such prospects for agile baby-steps stand out.  (The request
to make Windows Native scripts for the externals downloads and extractions is the closest
I've seen that I could act on that way.)

I have another observation that goes with this.  It goes back to "The Mythical Man Month"
1975 edition and Chapter 4 on Aristocracy, Democracy, and System Design.  There, Conceptual
Integrity is given great importance.  In the section on "What Does the Implementer Do While
Waiting?" the danger of adding developers too soon are described (though a bit indirectly).
 In this case, idle developers were on the payroll.  In our case any developers are volunteers
and they do not work on command.

I say Corinthia started out as a super-programmer project and it still is one.  That may change,
but the structure for it being otherwise is not in place.  While you might be able to pay
me for work that will never ship in the ultimate result, I won't do that for free.  (And these
days, with retirement as my career, it is hard to pay me for something I wouldn't do for free.)

I am thinking that moving Corinthia to Apache might have been a bit premature with regard
to the state of the code base and the degree to which the super-programmer has ideas about
how it is to become different.  Agreed, Corinthia is a podling.  However, it seems me that
the reason for being an Incubator project is not so much about the status of the code, it
is more about a place to transform to a project and process that evolves toward some level
of *sustainable* maturity.  Currently, there is a lot of moving target and it depends on the
super-programmer as benevolent dictator at this point.

With regard to exhortations to start doing something, I just stumbled on the quotation at
the beginning of Mythical Man Month Chapter 6, Passing the Word.

   He'll sit here and he'll say, "Do this! Do that!" 
   And nothing will happen.

That's attributed to U.S. President Harry S. Truman speaking on the limitations of presidential
power.

-----Original Message-----
From: jan i [mailto:jani@apache.org] 
Sent: Thursday, February 12, 2015 03:13
To: dev@corinthia.incubator.apache.org; Dennis Hamilton
Subject: Re: [DISCUSS] ODF Support in Corinthia

On 12 February 2015 at 03:47, Dennis E. Hamilton <dennis.hamilton@acm.org>
wrote:

> +1 on Peter's offer to provide skeletons with TODO comments everywhere.
>
I agree on this.....but instead of just talking let us get something done,
Peter and I cannot do it all, just because others make plans, we need ALL
to work on it.

rgds
jan i.

[ ... ]


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