[ros-dev] RE: What Happened
Carlo J. Calica
ccalica at gmail.com
Fri Feb 10 08:20:02 CET 2006
Murphy, Ged (Bolton) wrote:
> I'll give you an example, take the recent allegations of leaked MS source
> code in the ReactOS repository. These allegations completely were untrue,
> however as soon as this found it's way onto the public mailing list,
> drastic and maybe over reactive actions were taken.
> This email has single handidly stopped all development of ReactOS for the
> past 2 weeks and has the potential of holding the project up for a year or
> two. It's safe to say the project has been in trouble of dying off
I don't remember reading that on this list. The public allegations were:
wide spread "questionable" reverse engineering practices, and devs looking
at leaked code.
> Now, if this mail was received privately, we could have dealt with the
> issue internally and avoided all this mess. Development would have
> continued whilst we resolved any potential issues. For the community and
> the project as a whole, which would you consider to be the better option?
Pretending issues don't exist won't make them go away. The resolution
shouldn't change if discussed in private or public. Maybe development
could have continued during a code review, but then the code review would
take much longer and may never be completed. There might never have been
the clarification on reverse engineering techniques. As a potential user
and project proponent, I am VERY happy with the whistle blowing and the
public response. ReactOS IS stronger after this setback. Now you have a
good IP policy that is defensible.
> All projects have their problems, you just never hear about them because
> they aren't made public. There is nothing to be gained by hanging out your
> dirty linen in public.
It makes sure the linens are not that dirty. Public oversight is important.
This is especially important for a project where some devs have kept dirty
secrets in the past.
Beyond the elements of "public trust", remember XFree86. That project
suffered from "private politics". The result was stagnation and external
developer neglect. This didn't happen immediately but gradually. The same
COULD happen here.
Private communication (Skype, email, irc) does happen and in certain
instances IS advisable. Just don't make it easy or common. A private list
is just too easy and that makes it dangerous.
PLEASE reconsider the private list. Failing that, members of the list, move
public topics here. We DO appreciate it. It IS for the good of the
Don't feel the need to respond. I just wanted to provide an alternate
viewpoint. This topic is very much opinion. I doubt you'll be able to
change mine and I may be unable to change yours. I am nothing but an
interested observer, you owe me nothing. Thanks for hearing me out.
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