Encoding things in the bug title (was: Re: Please drop the please... please?)

Jonathan Marsden jmarsden at fastmail.fm
Fri Feb 27 18:08:59 GMT 2009

Brian Murray wrote:

> This allows them to be visually distinguishable, from other bug reports
> without a package, when you look at a bug list in Launchpad.  If
> "Please" were dropped from "sync request" you'd still have "sync" which
> is not the case with '[needs-packaging]' gpicsync'.

Stepping back a little: if we are going to formally encode various items 
of request-type information into the bug title field, perhaps it would 
be best to do so in a more standardized way?

So (for example) if we use [needs-packaging], we should also use [sync], 
and more generally should use [tag] for any given tag.  That way anyone 
writing scripts to process these has an easier job.  Further, when LP is 
(at some hypothetical future date) enhanced so we don't need to abuse 
the title field in this way, because it has easy to use capabilities for 
storing and displaying request types (sync, needs-packaging, bug, etc.), 
then an automated sweep could easily find all bugs with encoded [tag]s 
in their titles and set the appropriate type field(s).

The "visually distinguishable" part suggests to me that an enhancement 
request to make bugs with these tags be displayed in a distinctive way 
in the displayed list (different colour?  Symbol next to them?  Whatever 
UI people feel makes sense) might be appropriate.

In other words, IMO the creation of informal and inconsistent 
pseudo-standards for encoding information into the title field should be 
regarded as a sign that the system as a whole could and probably should 
deal with this information differently and more directly.  If that is 
impractical, or can only happen in the distant future, let's at least 
make the way we encode info in there be somewhat consistent.

Final thought: [needs-packaging] and [sync] are not really bugs, so much 
as requests for action.  Is naming this entire section of LP "Bugs" 
really the most appropriate way to go, since it is being used for things 
that are not really bugs, as well as for things that are indeed bugs?


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