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From "Daniel F. Savarese" <...@savarese.org>
Subject Re: Author Tags
Date Tue, 12 Aug 2003 02:02:58 GMT

In message <20030812005309.GJ27083@lyra.org>, Greg Stein writes:
>"ownership". Eliminating author tags is yet another tool to avoid those
>disruptive notions. Sure... if somebody is really gung ho on "owning" code,
>then any tool you use isn't going to help. But the hope is that people like
...
>Serge Knystautas defined a good policy for handling the recognition of
>contributors:
>
>    http://marc.theaimsgroup.com/?l=james-dev&m=103898649308900&w=2

Although I agree with the conclusion, I disagree with the reasons.
Whether it's author tags or change logs, the reason you list names
is to maintain accountability, not to give credit.  The
justification given in the mail you reference in effect buys into
the code ownership mentality by asserting that developers
"deserve recoginition."  The way I've always looked at it is that
developers have the responsibility to be accountable for their work.
The reason I've come to agree that author tags aren't particularly
useful is because they don't provide a sufficiently fine grained 
indication of accountability, which is what the revision control log
provides.  Accountability just means that you have a responsibility
to help resolve any future issues that may arise from your commits,
even if it's just answering a question like "I don't understand
how that method you added to rev 1.12 of class Foo 7 months ago works.
Can you explain it to me so I can make this change?"  Anyway, that's my
possibly misguided take on the Apache Way: it's not recognition
that matters, but responsibility.

daniel



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