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Re: No, "We" Don't Have to Do Anything

by thor (Priest)
on Feb 23, 2006 at 05:03 UTC ( #532172=note: print w/ replies, xml ) Need Help??


in reply to No, "We" Don't Have to Do Anything

We?
Yes, we. One of the huge strengths of Perl (in my opinion) is the community behind it. Once you start breaking things down into "the cool kids" and "losers" (as you're doing above), that community is divided into the haves and the have nots. I think brain d foy has a good point: I don't think as many people are attempting to bully the perl6 process, but I do think that people want a more transparent view into the overall progress of the project. I count myself in the latter group.

To further expound on the problem as I perceive it, I'm going to go looking for a project summary. I'd assume that an at-a-glance summary would be located here. I'd be wrong. I'll keep looking. Only because I remember the fervor surrounding apocalypses, exegeses, and synopses when this whole thing started, I thought that that might be a good place to start looking for at least the design documents. There are eight apocalypses (number non-contiguously might I add, implying that there are some missing), six exegeses (again numbered non-contiguously), and twelve synopses (more of the same). Okay, so we don't seem to have a complete design available to the public. But maybe there's hope. Maybe there's something like this (admittedly a little out of date) for perl6. A line by line list of tasks and their associated completion. I don't think I'm that bad at searching, but I didn't find it.

How can anyone know what to work on without a list of items trying to conform to a seemingly incomplete specification? Especially when coordinating with people solely via e-mail often many timezones apart. Maybe it works for you, but it seems to me that it'd be a reciepe for miscoordination and duplication of effort. I don't mean to be hard on a purely volunteer workforce for something that I'm sure to get great utility and enjoyment out of, but that's what I (and probably a lot of others not "in the know") see. It's also hard for me to try to contribute to something that I see as being that chaotic. I want to help, I really do. The whole things seems way too overwhelming. You guys are obviously better at keeping many more balls in the air than I am. Lower the barrier to entry and not only will you help yourself in so far as becoming a little more organized and efficent, but perhaps lurkers like me will come out of the woodwork and lend a hand.

thor

The only easy day was yesterday


Comment on Re: No, "We" Don't Have to Do Anything
Re^2: No, "We" Don't Have to Do Anything
by Aristotle (Chancellor) on Feb 23, 2006 at 05:49 UTC

    One of the huge strengths of Perl (in my opinion) is the community behind it.Once you start breaking things down into “the cool kids” and “losers” (as you're doing above), that community is divided into the haves and the have nots.

    Gary Lawrence Murphy, “Barnraising your IT”:

    Say your community shows up to build you a barn, and you sit on the porch drinking lemonade, criticising their carpentry and pestering them for a completion date, well, just how ludicrous is that scenario? Yet this is exactly what we are doing when we sit back like some ancient king, expecting free software served to us, taking what we need, giving nothing in return except maybe money… or “advocacy.”

    People who do not contribute are not “community.” And note that I (and, I’d assume by his posts, chromatic) use a very non-exclusive definition of “contribute” here. Anyone with 10 minutes of time can do something useful. There are no haves and have-nots, there are only those who drink the lemonade themselves vs. those who offer some to those building their barn.

    (Update: I missed saying that this is not to say anything about how easy it is to contribute 10 minutes to Perl 6. But just attempting to do so and then outlining why you had a hard time doing it is in itself a contribution – which goes to show that all you need is the will to help.)

    Makeshifts last the longest.

      Say your community shows up to build you a barn, and you sit on the porch drinking lemonade, criticising their carpentry and pestering them for a completion date, well, just how ludicrous is that scenario? Yet this is exactly what we are doing when we sit back like some ancient king, expecting free software served to us, taking what we need, giving nothing in return except maybe money… or “advocacy.”

      That analogy is somewhat flawed, because "I" am not the only one to benefit from the barnraising. It's more like a town that decides to build a communal barn that everyone can use (or some other civic project), and everyone is invited to help out. Not everyone is qualified to help build the thing, and in fact, some who try are likely to be in the way.

      I'd certainly love to help out with Perl 6, and I'm sure many others would. Unfortunately, I'm like one of the people who would just get in the way, not understanding how it's done, making clumsy efforts that would just take up someone's time to check it out and find out it's not useful, not really having a clue about the guts of perl.

      The fact is, I haven't even learned Perl 5 well enough to know where its deficiencies lie - (assuming it has any ;-) ). Most of what appears to be needed seems to require considerable technical knowledge. So yes, I feel I would better serve this effort by sitting on the sidelines and at least not interfering.

      Of course, I could also just keep my mouth shut about any putative schedule, and not try to tell folks how to go about writing this massive project. The least I can do is get out of the way and let others work... and to say "Thanks" on occasion.

        Most of what appears to be needed seems to require considerable technical knowledge.

        Some of the most useful questions I've seen on the Perl 6 language list are from people who've read a Synopsis, thought about it, and then asked about something that didn't quite make sense. You're definitely qualified to do that, if you have the time! (Not everyone does and that's fine.)

      Say your community shows up to build you a barn, and you sit on the porch drinking lemonade, criticising their carpentry and pestering them for a completion date, well, just how ludicrous is that scenario? Yet this is exactly what we are doing when we sit back like some ancient king, expecting free software served to us, taking what we need, giving nothing in return except maybe money… or “advocacy.”

      That's fine, as long as everyone knows what a barn is, and how to build one. That's not what we have: we have a bunch of people trying to build "a language", from specs that are full of "perhaps" and "maybe".

      Some of the people are hard at work looking to source marble for the Ionic Columns where the bulls will get sacrifice to Apollo, and some are trying to source cedar and silks for the nesting boxes for the Rookery, and some are hard at working forging metal bars to build the cages for the lions, and some are out in the fields trying to catch rabbits so the barn will have some animals. No one knows if they're building a Temple, a Rookery, a Zoo, a rabbit hutch, or all of the above.

      And some of the people are sitting on the porch, sipping lemonaide in bemusement, trying to figure out what's going on, who's in charge, and what's actually going to be built.

        That's fine, as long as everyone knows what a barn is, and how to build one. That's not what we have: we have a bunch of people trying to build "a language", from specs that are full of "perhaps" and "maybe".

        If you don't even know what a barn is, then you probably don't want to contribute. If you do know, and want to contribute, but don't know how to build one, then you can join the other volounteers and ask for directions.

        I suppose that you know at least how to drive in a nail. If you're willing to, then you will be given a hammer and a bunch of nails, and asked to drive them in. Part of Perl 6 development can be like that: read some synopses and write test for pugs. Or post relevant comments if you find inconsistencies, for example.

Re^2: No, "We" Don't Have to Do Anything
by chromatic (Archbishop) on Feb 23, 2006 at 07:28 UTC
    To further expound on the problem as I perceive it, I'm going to go looking for a project summary.

    Good detective work, thank you! That's something that the project needs and something that those of us who've been around for a while wouldn't have gone looking for ourselves. I'll bring that up and we'll figure out something.

      Just curious, but did anything ever come of this?

      thor

      The only easy day was yesterday

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