Future of REVU and Debian Mentors

Stephan Hermann sh at sourcecode.de
Fri Aug 3 20:36:09 BST 2007

Good Evening,

first of all, thanks Rheinhard for your endless love towards MOTU...it's 
amazing that after
all this months of hard work your spirit is not  broken.

Thinking back to the times of hoary (well, I'm sad that I wasn't 
involved in warty) and breezy, I have to say,
the small amount of people of the MOTU team (those times, Oliver and 
Daniel were the mother and father of the MOTUs,
where Oliver was more cheerful these days towards motu) did more work in 
general then nowadays.

I don't know why, but we had nothing. No MoM, no Launchpad, no Revu.
We just had the people having fun doing some work, with or without 
knowledge, they just worked.
The Ubuntu bugzilla was under load (when I think about my bugs during 
the C++ Transition, and doko had to spend a lot of time
to check the bugreports and my packages ;)) but everything worked better 
then today.

During this time, working with all you great people, Rheinhard and 
Stefan had the idea of Revu. They started to build this tool, and some 
others (including me) were jumping on
and started to work on it.

Today, REVU is used as MOTU Reviewing tool, but most of the time, for 
newcomers to push their packages towards Ubuntu.
Many packages are really not worth to review, and most of the revu 
package uploaders are not coming back to fix their bugs, when MOTUs are 
commenting on it.
And MOTUs will get sick and tired of those packages, and stop reviewing.

Therefore, I think the reviewing process failed. The people are not 
curious anymore, they don't want to fix their bugs, they just want to 
Somebody else will take the code and fix it, ok this is opensource, but 
for packages and especially for the MOTU area, it's just wrong.

Ok, now what could we (or you, just because I'm just a spectator and 
headshaker) do to solve this problem.

MOTU is community, community can do whatever they like. But this doesn't 
work in the Ubuntu Universe.
Our Community is bound to Canonical. Canonical is giving MOTU the 
platform to work on.

This is correct, but could also give the MOTU a bad influence. MOTUs 
becoming lazy: "Ah, well, Canonical is doing this, and coding that, cool 
Well, most ideas are coming from the outside. Launchpad won't be so 
successful when nobody gives ideas.

This is all about ideas and revu.

We needed REVU, just because we wanted new packages and we wanted to 
find new people with skills.
Not only packaging skills, but as well ideas.

We found those people, and during Ubuntu Below Zero, Rheinhard, Andrew 
(AJmitch) and I were sitting there and thinking about REVU2 and 
Rheinhard was writing this idea
as a great specification (in my PoV it was the best spec, this 
conference ever saw, thx siretart).

As community grows, people are coming and going, this is also applying 
for Ubuntu MOTU. Some other people are having other duties like family, 
their jobs etc. So the time is counted.
Now it's your (MOTUs of Today) duty to work on the old ideas of Revu2.

It's not about "Oh, But Canonical is coming around with PPAs on 
Launchpad" or "Why should we reinvent the wheel?", it's about

"We are the community, and we should build our own platform, to work 
with, to find new people".

There are people, who are thinking, that LP is an overkill for small 
things like uploading a package, most packages won't even make it into 
therefore LP will be loaded with more then a handful of crap. And this 
is something we have to avoid.

Furthermore, as Rheinhard wrote:
> I'm a bit sad that there seems to be a general attitude among MOTUs that
> we get the tools we are working with crafted by either Debian or
> Launchpad. This raises the assumption that there is not much technical
> understanding needed for packaging software in ubuntu. I do not think
> this is true. I rather think that we should focus more on crafting tools
> which aid us in the daily workflow. With 'us' I mean 'we, the community
> of Ubuntu Developers'.

In the past, we had good guys, who were very involved into the "secrets" 
of debian packaging
and repository work. I'm also glad, that Adri and Lutin made DaD happen, 
even if I think that a talk with Scott about freeing MoM
would be a better idea, then reinventing this special wheel, but they 
did something, nobody did before. Thx for that.

Right now, there are not many people with this knowledge, and I only 
know some of you, who have or are able to produce
those developing skills.
> I do think there is still a lot of room for crafting dedicated MOTU
> tools. The Project [2] is of course a good start! We should stress it
> more and work more on extending those tools. As far as I can see, it is
> a branch of small scripts for day-to-day tools for Ubuntu Developers. I
> expect that many fellow developers have local branches on their
> computers where they hack their own tools and merge them back to the
> trunk from time to time (where it fits). I imagine that we can also
> craft wepapps to aid us, like the examples I listed above!

We (or you) are working on a distro. We (or you) are naming us "Ubuntu 
An Ubuntu Developer is more then a packaging slave. It involves 
"Developing The Environment / Structure Of Your Distro".

Why don't you start to develop your MOTU environment?

Have a nice evening and a great weekend,

just my 2 €Cent

More information about the Ubuntu-motu mailing list