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Re: [HACKERS] Increased company involvement

From: Bruce Momjian <pgman(at)candle(dot)pha(dot)pa(dot)us>
To: Dave Held <dave(dot)held(at)arraysg(dot)com>
Cc: PostgreSQL-development <pgsql-hackers(at)postgresql(dot)org>,PostgreSQL advocacy <pgsql-advocacy(at)postgresql(dot)org>
Subject: Re: [HACKERS] Increased company involvement
Date: 2005-05-02 17:55:50
Message-ID: 200505021755.j42Htoj07622@candle.pha.pa.us (view raw or flat)
Thread:
Lists: pgsql-advocacypgsql-hackers
Dave Held wrote:
> Just watching the hackers list suggests to me that this is the norm,
> rather than the exception.  I guess I'm interested to see which
> patches have been accepted that the core developers opposed.  Now
> don't get me wrong.  Sometimes there are good technical reasons why
> feature A or B can't or shouldn't be added or even developed.  And
> I don't suggest that patches lacking technical merit should not be
> rejected.  But sometimes it seems that ideas with undetermined
> merit get passed over because of a quick judgement based on 
> intuition, and only if the proposer actively fights for it for a
> while does it get reconsidered.
> 
> Of course, it would be quite a bit of work for me to review the
> list and compile instances where I think this has occurred, but
> only because of the tedium involved to make a minor point...not
> because I think I would have difficulty finding evidence.  I'm just

Well, if there was an issue and you had been around for a minimal amount
of time, I would think you could come up with at least one example.

> saying that as an outsider, if I had a lot of resources to devote
> to contributing to Postgres, I would only consider working on
> approved TODO items or making sure I more or less had core buy-in
> before writing any code.  I don't think it would be worth my
> time to work on something that non-core users/developers might
> like but core hackers don't.

Well, our developer's FAQ clearly states you should communicate your
ideas to the hackers list before starting work to be sure you have
_community_ buy-in, rather than core buy-in.

And the TODO list is not a core list, it is accumulated from community
suggestions and discussion.

> Like I said, that's not necessarily a bad thing.  Postgres is a
> piece of software with many interacting components, and there
> needs to be some coordination to make sure it evolves in a 
> sensible way.  But I think that implies that there must be and
> is some de facto centralization of control, whether that is the
> published ideology or not.

I will give you the example of adding a read-only table as an example. I
am betting the idea will not be accepted because the costs outweight the
gain, but I will post my opinions on the list and others will as well
and we will come to some concensus.  If X members feel something is bad,
and 5X members think something is good, it almost always gets in --- it
doesn't matter if all the core people are in X or not.

Another example is the recent patch to check if there are orphaned file
system files.  That was submitted, Tom had questions, I posted why I
thought it was valid, and the patch is going in today.  Anyone has the
ability to argue their point and try to sway the community, and any
member has the right to request a vote on a specific issue.

Perhaps we are more a replublic because we do defer our judgement to
others who have looked into the area more thoroughly.

-- 
  Bruce Momjian                        |  http://candle.pha.pa.us
  pgman(at)candle(dot)pha(dot)pa(dot)us               |  (610) 359-1001
  +  If your life is a hard drive,     |  13 Roberts Road
  +  Christ can be your backup.        |  Newtown Square, Pennsylvania 19073

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