OpenTTS 0.1 released.

Hynek Hanke hanke at
Mon Jun 7 16:34:47 BST 2010

On 6.6.2010 05:09, Luke Yelavich wrote:
> I am proud to announce the very first release of OpenTTS, version 0.1.

Dear Luke Yelavich,

It is a pure nonsense that the development of OpenTTS
started two months ago. You know very well that it is a fork
of the Speech Dispatcher project which has been developed
in the course of the past 10 years. The real developers are
different from who you wrote in your announce.

The project was not started to become a replacement for
gnome-speech, as you state, instead being a generic speech
service available to different client applications, Gnome and Orca
being one of them. The decision of Orca to migrate to Speech
Dispatcher has been made over the past year and was announced
before OpenTTS was ``created'', as is described on Bugzilla:

Please let us remind you that the architecture and design are
what is most important. It took us time and resources to come
up with the current architecture and we don't think OpenTTS is
introducing anything significantly new over Speech Dispatcher.
Although some work has been done in the fork, in the big picture,
these have been so far just minor code improvements.

Before the fork, there was a face-to-face agreement between
you and Brailcom, that you will keep an unofficial development
repository, where we will gather patches and changes, which will
later be reviewed and released in the official version. While we were
doing so, we evaluated the quality of the patches gathered in this way
and found it was very various. There were good code improvements,
but they were mixed with very amateurish hacks (such as totally random
port assignment or completely missing documentation), which we could
not release as serious software without first finding time to rework
them significantly, which takes resources and time.

The whole fork is an unnecessary fragmentation of the limited
resources we all have for accessibility. If there was capacity
to move Speech Dispatcher forward, it could have been done in
the same project.

We still continue the development of Speech Dispatcher from our
own resources for the benefit of all of you, in our own serious
and systematic way, and preparing the 0.7 release. It is however
impossible now for us to use fixes and improvements from the OpenTTS Git
due to reorganization of its code and especially the unnecessary
renaming of all identifiers in the code.

As the real developers of Speech Dispatcher, which some of you now
call OpenTTS, we must say that a lot of work is currently being wasted.
We continue to see this as very bad.

The new name OpenTTS is very unfortunate, because it is technically
wrong. Speech Dispatcher/OpenTTS doesn't do and shouldn't do any TTS
(Text-to-Speech). It is merely an interface between applications and
Text-to-Speech engines. Serious developers must understand and use 
terminology correctly.

We still don't see a technical reason for such duplication of effort.
We asked for responsibility and cooperation several times publicly and
also privately without any effect. We are a non profit organization
and our main goal is to help visually impaired people. All our
projects are strictly Free Software projects and Speech Dispatcher is
one of our key long term projects for the last 10 years. We believe
that it is a major benefit for every project to be backed up by a stable
company which provides quality controll and stability of the future
development. We don't understand the motivations behind rebranding
Speech Dispatcher to OpenTTS.

We believe that a constructive solution is still possible. Our offer
of cooperation is still valid, nothing has changed. There are two
possibilities for cooperation: as a volunteer contributor and in the
future as a paid member of our development team. Anyone who wishes to
cooperate, please contact us, we are very open.

Best regards,
Hynek Hanke
Speech Dispatcher maintainer
Brailcom, o.p.s.

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