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rwatson at FreeBSD.org
Thu Sep 18 21:07:32 UTC 2008
On Thu, 18 Sep 2008, Lowell Gilbert wrote:
> Jo Rhett <jrhett at netconsonance.com> writes:
>> We have no 4.x or 5.x systems nor do we have any interest in maintaining
>> those. So perhaps a good idea, but not something I can help with.
>> I *did* offer to work on maintenance for 6.2, but was told it would be
>> rejected by the developers. Would I extend effort to do exactly what I am
>> talking about -- extending the support lifetime for very recent releases?
>> Absolutely. If its in a form useful for the community as a whole.
>> If I have to do this on my own (what we are doing internally now) then the
>> FreeBSD community leverages nothing from the effort, and we're not changing
>> the resources limitations at all.
> I've kind of lost the drift, but it sounds to me as though Jo Rhett is
> tentatively offering to take on extended support for 6.2, but not earlier
> versions. Aside from programming skills, what would Jo need to bring to the
> table in order to provide that back to the project? Is that a reasonable
> statement of what's on discussion here?
> [Sorry for putting words into people's mouths, but I need a more concrete
> discussion in order to be sure I know what anybody actually means.]
What Jo needs to do is what we expect from other participants in the project
who want to take on positions of responsibility: build a long-term track
record of contributions so that we can trust that when they agree to take on
obligations (and we advertise those claims, be it by changing branch
lifetimes, accepting WIP feature contributions, etc), they will be fulfilled.
Developers offer to mentor new contributors and help shepherd their work when
they see that the contributor both has a clear technical contribution to offer
*and* that they build necessary rapport and confidence that the investment of
time by the mentor is worthwhile. Everyone on this list is a busy person and
values their time, and mentoring a developer is a highly non-trivial
investment of time, and in most cases, it's a donation of personal time. It
is potentially very rewarding, but a lot of work.
Robert N M Watson
University of Cambridge
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