Evolutionary Code Development (was: GGI, EGCS/PGCC, Kernel source)

Kristian Koehntopp (kris@koehntopp.de)
Thu, 26 Feb 1998 08:10:59 +0100 (CET)

In netuse.lists.linux-kernel you write:
> This is what happens when people are isolated from the mainstream
>of kernel development - they lose access to the communal wisdom of
>linux-kernel. If you feel that GGI has taken a few dead-end paths, keep
>in mind that these could have been maybe nipped in the bud some time ago
>if a few more senior members of this list could have lowered themselves
>to talk to us and give advice and maybe even help out a bit....

And this is the single point I hate most about how the Linux
kernel developing community has handled the whole video issue
for at least the last year.

Linux is strong in part due to an evolutionary approach to code:
Take whatever mutations you get, integrate them into the kernel
or whatever project is done and let natural selection do half of
the work: Either the code will be dropped (ext and xiafs
filesystem) due to a lack of interest or - if it is not good -
the pain will grow to a level where somebody will do something
about it. Actually, the approach is better that raw evolution,
because the mutation process in code development is directed,
not undirected as in nature and the selection process includes
communication between code users. Pushing coders or code out of
this process does no good for those pushed out nor for those who
are pushing.

And the GGI development community _has_ been pushed - just
remember for example the GGI session at the Linux developers
conference in Germany last year.

I suggest that you take GGI into the mainstream kernel. This way
it will get public review. The GGI people will get criticism,
error reports, complaints. They will also get patches and
interested developers. And there will be people interested into
integrating current approaches like fbcon with GGI.

But all this won't happen unless you expose GGI to some real
world use and pains by including it into the mainstream kernel.
Let's just see if it survives and improves.


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