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Re: Auto-Generating ChangeLog and AUTHORS for projects in a version trac

From: Gavin Smith
Subject: Re: Auto-Generating ChangeLog and AUTHORS for projects in a version tracking system?
Date: Fri, 14 Nov 2014 14:01:08 +0000

On Wed, Oct 29, 2014 at 10:39 PM, Eric Blake <address@hidden> wrote:
> On 10/29/2014 04:29 PM, Diego Elio Pettenò wrote:
>> Can't we just say that gnu-flavour automake is pointless and foreign should
>> be the default? Or am I too opinionated on that?
> For GNU projects, the 'gnu' flavor still makes sense, even if it could
> use a little modernization such as easier automation of generating
> ChangeLog from version control.  And while these days, automake is
> probably used by more non-gnu projects (where 'foreign' may make more
> sense) than GNU projects, that's still not a good reason to toggle the
> default.  I like what the GNU Coding Standards represent, and deviating
> from them deserves a mention in to make it apparent that
> you thought about it.

Having to either specify 'foreign' or creating files like "ChangeLog"
or "AUTHORS" is an extra step in initializing an automake project,
which would be a slightly tricky and involved process even without
this step. It's annoying that automake /could/ run, but refuses to
because you forgot to put "AUTOMAKE_OPTIONS=foreign" in
Extra steps like this limit the usefulness and applicability of a
program Even if you intend to follow the GNU Coding Standards you will
not necessarily want to write all these files at the beginning. Or the
project may never be intended for release.

What about checking for these files in "make distcheck" instead? That
way you could initialize and use an automake build system without
worrying about it, but you would still get a warning when you were
thinking of making a release, when the project is in a more complete

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