[Python-Dev] 2.7 is here until 2020, please don't call it a waste.

Stephen J. Turnbull stephen at xemacs.org
Sat May 30 15:53:13 CEST 2015

Antoine Pitrou writes:

 > > In a community of volunteers, ideology is typically a great
 > > motivator.
 > If and only everyone agrees on it.

That, my friend, is *your* ideology speaking.  Some people work on
open source to scratch technical itches -- the program doesn't do what
they want, they're able to improve it, the license allows them to
improve it, so they do, done.  Others use that same freedom to change
the software to improve the world in other ways.  We don't need to
agree on *why* we do the work we do.  We only need to agree on an
evaluation and arbitration process for determining *which* work gets
released as part of "original Python".  More on that below.
 > Otherwise, it is typically a great divisor.

Only because some people make a point of insisting on implementing
theirs[1] -- and others insist on objecting to any mention of it.  I
think both extremes are divisive -- but nothing new there, extremes
usually are divisive.

Now, Christian did say "must" when he suggested considering the
environment, and that's obviously not right.  To the extent that folks
are volunteers and not bound by the professional ethics that Nick
professes, there's no *must* about it.  I don't think Christian really
meant to try to impose that on everybody in the project, though.  It
was more a wish on his part as I understand it, one he knows will at
best be fulfilled gradually and voluntarily as people come to be aware
of the issue and agree with him that some things need to be done to
address it.

But if people like Christian choose to work on patches because they
are "environmentally friendly", or vote +1 on them, even if that means
a clarification or even reinterpretation of maintenance policy, why
should we care whether they say what their motivation is?

On the other hand, if it *is* a change in maintenance policy to commit
the Intel patch, IMO you have right on your side to speak up about
that (as you do elsewhere).  (OTOH, it seems to me that most posters
in this thread so far agree that it's a mere clarification of
*policy*, although it's a clear reallocation of *effort* that probably
wouldn't come voluntarily from the core committers.)

You're also right to point out that the nature of the community will
change as people paid to work on commercially desirable tasks become
committers.  Definitely the natures of Linux and GUI framework
development changed (as indeed X11 did when it passed from a
commercial consortium to a more open organization) as commercial
interests started supplying more and more effort, as well as hiring
core developers.  Whether that prospective change is a good thing for
Python is a matter for debate, and (speaking only for myself, and this
may not be the appropriate channel anyway) I'm interested in hearing
your discussion on that matter.

 > Even abidance to RMS' writings and actions would probably not
 > be unanimous here...

I assure there's absolutely no "probably" about it.  You evidently
missed the (intended though obscure) irony of *me* praising RMS's
ideology (see return address).

[1]  You could argue that "insisting on implementing" is implied by
"ideology", but then I expect that Christian would deny a desire to
*impose* his values on the project.

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