|No such thing as a small change|
Re^2: Losing faith in CPAN - unresponsive module authors (ownership--)by tye (Sage)
|on Jun 25, 2008 at 07:51 UTC||Need Help??|
More CPAN modules need to be hosted on revision-control-system repositories so that it is easier to submit patches and easier to produce releases after patches are applied. Although it may not seem like a lot of work to apply a patch and release a new version, it is certainly more work than it should be and this leads to authors being more likely to be blockers of new releases.
I wish CPAN would ( place more emphasis on / pay more respect to ) progress and less on/to "ownership". Although the shift here would be rather subtle, I still think that it would help a lot to have the default be to allow new versions of modules to be indexed even if they aren't by an "authorized" author, so long as it has been a few months since an "authorized" author released a version.
It shouldn't require manual intervention to allow somebody to release a new version of an abandoned module. If the "owner" objects, then they can become active and prevent such releases from being "official" (and thus prevent them from being fully indexed) by simply releasing every few months.
If Joe Random Contributor can easily not just write a patch that fixes a bug but actually check in a patch and then check out a new snapshot of a module (and reconcile any work-in-progress that has not yet been released to CPAN), then Joe is more likely to feel like producing the full patch that updates the Changes file and adds appropriate unit tests (etc.).
I've certainly refrained from producing patches for modules quite a few times because the black box (hole?) of "you have to submit it to the 'author' and hope they do something with it" often doesn't look promising.
I have quite a few small patches to modules in various states at various places. From time to time I try to produce a new release of a module and usually find that the little details end up soaking up enough time that the release never actually gets finished and on CPAN before I'm pulled away for other tasks. Then, when I return, more little details have amassed (or been misplaced) and the same failure happens again.
So I've started down the road of putting my modules into public git repositories. But, alas, that task is not yet completed either. It would be cool if CPAN (or, more likely, PAUSE) were to acquire such features (or at least to facilitate them), but we are all volunteers, of course...