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From James Sutherland <>
Subject Re: [Fwd: png icons for apache]
Date Mon, 18 Sep 2000 22:56:27 GMT
On Mon, 18 Sep 2000 wrote:
> In a message dated 00-09-18 18:05:16 EDT, James wrote...
> >  > Go for it. I think you are talking to the wrong person, however.
> >  > It doesn't matter what I think. You need to talk to someone who
> >  > rolls the Apache tarballs.
> >  
> >  I know - it's just you were the one objecting :-)
> Not really objecting...
> Just wondering who perceives this to be a problem that needs solving.
> That person would not be me.

It's not a huge issue, just something I think we should do.

> >  Yup. One thing we should work on is making Apache work "out of the box":
> >  make the defaults as sensible as possible, clearly document the config
> >  files, etc.
> You mean... kinda like what a coupla guys in North Carolina finally
> did for Linux and called the extra effort Purple Hat or something
> like that? I think they both own their own islands now.

LOL! Not quite... I just think we should make an effort to make the
defaults as sensible as possible, that sort of thing - if I grab a fresh
tarball from a suitable site, unpack and run, what do I need to change? Do
we really need an extra step, or can it be automated? If the server is
more useful/secure/whatever with some option enabled, enable it...

> Forgive me but I think by now the odds that this will ever happen
> for Apache are about as good as the Heaven's Gate folks coming 
> back from the other side of the comet to tell us there wasn't anything 
> there.

I know, I know, I do have a habit of backing lost causes, like wanting
petrol tax in the UK to fall below 450%... It's a nice idea. We might not
be able to do it "properly", but it's a goal we should all keep in mind.

> People have talked about documenting Apache correctly for years
> but it just hasn't happened... and who can blame them. The code
> just won't stand still long enough for the effort to be worth it.

Changes in code don't necessarily mean changes in what the average admin
needs to know. In fact, a nice stable interface is also something to aim

> >  > >  ...why shouldn't we offer PNGs??
> >  > 
> >  > No reason other than the same reason people don't offer
> >  > compressed versions of their Web sites, which would REALLY
> >  > help the whole bandwidth situation. It's a bother and most 
> >  > people just don't want to bother generating ( or maintaining )
> >  > 2 sets of anything.
> >  
> >  True; since this can be automated, though, we can just add this to the
> >  tarball rolling instructions? Maintain one set (preferably PNG, I think?)
> >  as authoritative, then autogenerate the GIF version from that in each
> >  tarball.
> autogenerate with what? 
> See what I mean. You are now talking 'autogenerate' and 'maintain'
> and 'two sets' and 'in each tarball' which all amounts to one thing...
> more file maintenance ( with barely perceptible reasons for doing so ).

I'm talking about someone running one small script when building tarballs.
Hardly a big deal - I'll do it myself, if prodded hard enough...

> >  > If you really see this as a problem... do what the process
> >  > allows... submit a patch with new insertions for the tarball
> >  > and run it up the flagpole and see if it flys.
> >  
> >  I think someone's already done this; they certainly quoted the file size
> >  changes, and there wasn't much in it.
> I still think it's a solution in search of a problem.
> Just my opinion.

To some extent - but I think we should be offering PNGs as an alternative
to GIFs where possible without much effort. Just like I think the docs
should all be valid HTML... 


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