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Re: GSoC application deadline passed

From: olafBuddenhagen
Subject: Re: GSoC application deadline passed
Date: Tue, 18 Mar 2008 15:46:25 +0100
User-agent: Mutt/1.5.17+20080114 (2008-01-14)


On Mon, Mar 17, 2008 at 12:26:30PM +0100, Arne Babenhauserheide wrote:
> El Sunday, 16 de March de 2008 20:55:08 olafBuddenhagen@gmx.net
> escribió:

> > > When we had the HURD in my informatics class, one task was to find
> > > out information about the HURD, and as I searched for information
> > > on the current state of the HURD, it looked quite dead.
> >
> > That's interesting. When was that class, and where?
> It was in 2006 in Heidelberg: Informatics 3: Operating Systems and
> Networking. ->
> http://pvs.informatik.uni-heidelberg.de/Teaching/bsnw-0607.html

Nice to hear that someone gets interested in the Hurd this way :-)

> > As you seem to be quite new here, you are probably not aware of
> > this; but the reason we have no releases is not really because it's
> > too much effort. Rather, it's because most influential people here
> > either do not care, or actively dislike the idea of making a
> > release. 
> I'm not that new anymore. I joined the list about 2006 during that
> informatics class,

Well, I assumed so, because I don't remember having seen you speak up
before :-)

> because I realized that the ideas behind the Hurd fit with what I
> believe: It should be possible for users to add system services
> dynamically, because a computer should restrict its users as little as
> possible - instead it should be a product increasing our freedom - and
> I am not free in changing my computer as i want it, if I have to hope
> for some kernel hackers to integrate a new piece of software into the
> kernel, so I can use it - or for someone to patch the kernel for each
> new release to add the feature I need.

Pretty nice description of the ideas behind the Hurd :-)

> Maybe it would be possible to get the best of two worlds: "Avoiding a
> really late and still incomplete release" and "having regular
> releases" by just visibly featuring the Debian distribution along with
> livecds, qemu images and news on the Hurd pages. 

That's not quite the same. It probably makes no difference technically,
but it does make a major difference psychologically.

Also note that having both Debian releases *and* official Hurd releases,
we get more exposure... :-)

> It preserves the current status: "The Hurd doesn't do releases until
> it is mostly feature complete" while putting out news and promoting
> the work of the Debian people as well as the advances inside the Hurd. 

But do we *want* to preserve that terrible state?...

Sooner or later we will *have* to release -- and the longer we wait, the
stronger the pressure to come up with something ground breaking. It
get's worse and worse. We need to break this evil circle; the sooner we
do that, the less painful it will be.

The strategy I suggest is to create a 0.3 release very soon; put up the
tarball and some release notes on the server, but never announce it
anywhere. A bit later, do that again with 0.3.1. Maybe with 0.3.2 or so
we could already announce it in a very careful manner. With 0.3.3, more
openly. And so on.

This way, by the time most people realize that we are doing releases
(again), it will be business as usual. "Yeah, right, another development
release. We have been doing these for some time now, haven't you

> > That's precisely the kind of input I hoped for before the deadline;
> > now it's too late to change it :-( Remains to hope that google
> > itself will place the information prominently...
> I just added that information to the student application form, so it
> should be visible to students. 
> It isn't really prominent in the Google FAQ (I searches a bit before
> posting it here, sonce I remembered there was some limit but not
> exactly which).  
> And I think it might be right on time, since the student application
> time didn't start yet. 

No, the draft isn't linked. I had to paste it directly into the
application form. We can change the draft as much as we like (for next
year perhaps...), but I don't think we can still influence the version
that the students will see...

Well, maybe I can still edit it as organisation administrator. Let's


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