Status reports - why not regularly?

Poul-Henning Kamp phk at
Tue Jan 13 06:48:00 PST 2004

In message <1074003293.18384.62.camel at>, Matteo Riondato writes

>That's quite a problem, because how can we inform normal users about new
>features that will be included, if developers don't tell "anyobody" they
>are working on those features?

I think you can approach this from a better angle.

Think: journalist.

That is really what we are looking for here, a journalistic treatment
of what's going on in the project.

It's very well that people post various emails on the forums and
whats not, but what we need here is for somebody to _summarize_,
rather than _repost_.

And journalists don't know very much about what they write about,
they just try to make sense out of it.

And journalists soon learn to spot when things happen, and they get
better at it with some experience.

(One of my uncles were a volounteer fireman, and he knew how to find
out if journalists were present: park your car prominently, wear
some fireman token visibly, suddenly leave the room with barely an
excuse.  The bloke who rush out after you is a journalist for the
local paper :-)

And there certainly isn't anything preventing you from sending an
email to a committer going "I saw your commit to
src/sys/kern/subr_cowsay.c, could you say a few words about it ?"

And similarly, anyone who's been around for some time will soon
know to read the subtle signs of people doing a few white-space
corrections here, and few details there as something brewing under
the cover in that general area.

It doesn't quite have to be the level of or
washington post, for our little project a lot less will do.

You would have more than fullfilled my dreams, if after vacation I
could just read the FreeBSD-times, and confidently kill my entire


Poul-Henning Kamp       | UNIX since Zilog Zeus 3.20
phk at FreeBSD.ORG         | TCP/IP since RFC 956
FreeBSD committer       | BSD since 4.3-tahoe    
Never attribute to malice what can adequately be explained by incompetence.

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