[Python-Dev] Commit messages: please avoid temporal ambiguity

Terry Reedy tjreedy at udel.edu
Tue May 10 00:59:41 CEST 2011

On 5/9/2011 4:05 PM, Guido van Rossum wrote:
> On Mon, May 9, 2011 at 12:36 PM, Eric Smith<eric at trueblade.com>  wrote:
>> On 05/09/2011 03:17 PM, Guido van Rossum wrote:

>>> While my own preference is "make X properly raise an exception" I'm
>>> happy with any of the alternatives proposed here, and grateful to
>>> Terry for calling this out.

I am willing to admit that I do not know all corners of Python ;-)
I read the commit messages to learn more; in particular what sort of 
errors exist and how are they fixed.

 >>> Checkin comments of the form "X does Y"
>>> are ambiguous and confusing. (Same for feature requests in the
>>> tracker.)

I have always assumed that an issue entitled 'x does y' is a bug report 
about doing y now, before a fix.

>> Thanks indeed for bringing this up, Terry. It's been on my to-do list
>> for a while. I think it comes from just copying the title of a bug
>> report. The bug is "X does Y", and that's what's used in the fix.

I have also seen this type of message for non-tracker-issue commits.

> But in bug reports it is also ambiguous, since I've often seen it used
> meaning "X should do Y" which is very confusing when it doesn't do Y
> yet at the time the bug is created. :-(

If I notice a title that bad, I will try to change it.

Terry Jan Reedy

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