[Distutils] PEP 440 on PyPI

Nick Coghlan ncoghlan at gmail.com
Mon Jan 26 12:46:13 CET 2015

On 26 January 2015 at 03:27, Donald Stufft <donald at stufft.io> wrote:
>> On Jan 25, 2015, at 12:01 PM, Ian Cordasco <graffatcolmingov at gmail.com> wrote:
>> On Sun, Jan 25, 2015 at 10:52 AM, M.-A. Lemburg <mal at egenix.com> wrote:
>>> The advantage of a blog is having news entries persist and be
>>> easy to find, while at the same time simplifying the whole
>>> publishing process.
>>> Anyway, just a suggestion.
>> I still don't understand the benefit. You could just as easily have
>> the mailing list mirrored to a blog if we felt it would help but
>> distutils-sig has public archives and (I think) is indexed by Google.
>> Donald, Paul, Nick, Richard, Jason, and everyone else whose name I'm
>> forgetting are already working a lot on PyPI, packaging, pip,
>> setuptools, etc. I don't see the benefit in maintaining the blog on
>> top of their other responsibilities. Maybe if someone else steps up to
>> be an editor and take mailing list posts and turn them into blog
>> posts, that'd be cool, but I don't see the value in making them
>> maintain yet another thing on top of what they do.
> I’ve thought about doing something like this https://devcenter.heroku.com/changelog
> but I hadn’t had the time to actually do anything to make it a thing.

I think that's probably the kind of thing that would be most useful,
rather than a full blog. It could link back to the relevant
distutils-sig posts in the archives for additional context.

The key is to have a place to track and report changes to
PyPI-the-service rather than PyPI-the-software-project or
PyPA-the-ecosystem. Given that "single source of truth", we can figure
out how best to send it other places (e.g. RSS, Twitter). (RSS in
particular could be syndicated to Planet Python)

As far as "why isn't the mailing list enough?" goes, the problem with
the list is that it also handles a lot of *other* traffic. Similarly,
@pypi on Twitter reports all the package updates, so it's too noisy to
be particularly useful to report "Hey, we just changed something on
PyPI, if you get unexpected behaviour, check if it may be related!"

While having such a feed available won't necessarily stop people from
being surprised the first time they encounter an unexpected change,
being able to answer "How can I avoid being surprised like this
again?" with "Subscribe to this tightly focused RSS feed" can make the
difference between a genuinely unhappy user (they got a nasty
surprise, and have no low investment way to reduce the risk of it
happening again in the future), and a temporarily annoyed one (they
still got a nasty surprise, but they also learned about a useful
information feed highly relevant to their interests).


Nick Coghlan   |   ncoghlan at gmail.com   |   Brisbane, Australia

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