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Re: Do we prefer software that works or software that looks good?

From: Stephan Szabo <sszabo(at)megazone(dot)bigpanda(dot)com>
To: Shachar Shemesh <psql(at)shemesh(dot)biz>
Cc: Tom Lane <tgl(at)sss(dot)pgh(dot)pa(dot)us>,Robert Treat <xzilla(at)users(dot)sourceforge(dot)net>,Dennis Bjorklund <db(at)zigo(dot)dhs(dot)org>,Bruce Momjian <pgman(at)candle(dot)pha(dot)pa(dot)us>,PostgreSQL-development <pgsql-hackers(at)postgresql(dot)org>,PostgreSQL advocacy <pgsql-advocacy(at)postgresql(dot)org>
Subject: Re: Do we prefer software that works or software that looks good?
Date: 2004-04-24 07:43:25
Message-ID: 20040423235639.G35081@megazone.bigpanda.com (view raw or flat)
Thread:
Lists: pgsql-advocacypgsql-hackerspgsql-www
On Sat, 24 Apr 2004, Shachar Shemesh wrote:

> Tom Lane wrote:
> >So what I'm holding out for is a design that lets me continue to see the
> >current behavior if I set a GUC variable that says that's what I want.
> >
> >This seems possible (not easy, but possible) if we are willing to
> >require the choice to be made at compile time ... but that sounds too
> >restrictive to satisfy anybody ... what we need is a design that
> >supports such a choice per-session, and I dunno how to do that.
> >
> >
> In other words, you are going to reject the simpler solutions that treat
> this as a transition problem, because of asthetic issue? Not even
> program design issue, mind you. Sounds strange to me, and also pretty
> much guarentees that this will never happen. That would be a shame.

[ Tom, we know your opinion on the first part of the next paragraph, so
you don't need to reply to that part. ;) ]

Are we going to get rid of the current behavior entirely? If so, how are
we going to handle issues like current databases with names like foo and
"FOO" (and what if the name was given as "foo")? If not, when can one set
the folding options and how do we (in the long term) make the database
work properly in both settings. Things like "don't worry about the catalog
entries" don't fly when your standard functions are defined and
looked up there.

Depending on the answers to the above, we need to think about things like
the transitional plans put forth. Do these plans actually help transition
things. The fold up and down compare one then the other on a failure of
the first may be fairly invasive changes, still has problems when quotes
are used inconsistently and can also silently change behavior from old
versions (on that database mentioned above, what does select * from foo
do, is it the same as before?). These may or may not be huge issues and it
may or may not be easily solvable, but these things need to be figured out
IMHO before something can be considered a solution.

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