At 17:03 Uhr -0400 19.05.2002, Mark Rahner wrote:
>Max, you've become rather emotional over absolutely nothing.  I 
>think it's clouding your judgement.

Uhm... yes? Thanks that you tell me, I wasn't aware I was emotional 
about this :-) OK maybe a bit annoyed, since it seems we are 
completly missing each others point.


>>>Evolution is *not* usable now because it's not buildable.  It depends
>>>which doesn't exist anymore.  The current version is 1.0.5.  This is
>>>an example of the Fink-external *source* dependencies I was talking
>>>about.  I'll let you know how evolution is after I can build it. ;-)
>>If you had told me, I could have done something about this. But in 
>>any case, mirroring every source is not an option currently. And in 
>>most cases isn't necessary. A pity that they throw away old 
>>sources, unlike most other package publishers.
>I told you clearly and I told you that it happened twice on my first package.

Oops, I missed that then, sorry. I saw you had problems getting the 
source, but was not aware that that was because it was replaced with 
a new version.

>  Remember the db problem from a week or so ago?  Maybe evolution 
>isn't a typical package, but two strikes on the first package is 

Sure it's bad if a package is broken, fully agreed! Since several 
people complained about evo for this reason, I finally removed it 
from the tree now, to be readded once it's fixed & tested. To repeat 
what I said earlier, though: I never believed it to be proper for 
release, but many people bugged me who wanted it, so I released, and 
after all, our unstable tree is for testing. It's hard ot find these 
problems if you never make a release of the package.

>   I'm pointing it out so that you can improve Fink.  If you don't 
>want to improve Fink, don't, but don't shoot the messenger either.

Well, sure. But I find it a bit confusin that you make the evolution 
package a central aspect of your email; to me it is not central, it's 
only one example of several. Anyway if you have *specific* problems 
with a package, either submit a bug report via our bug tracker, or 
contact the author directly in an email.

>  My opinion is protected by truth.

Uh, "truth", be carefuly with that word... But I assume you meant it 
in the sense of "facts" here or so.

>  External source dependencies are hurting Fink.  Evolution is not 
>usable at all right now.  Python wasn't usable for some of last 
>week.  It will happen again unless something changes.

Yes, it will happen again and again for the time being. The 
alternative for us is to mirror all sources, for every single 
package, in every single version we ever released it. Not even Debian 
is doing that, and they still have 18 GB of data or so I was told by 

Yeah, I do see the problem of course. But I disagree with your 
suggested solution for the time being (even though you claim it to be 
"true" :-).

I do agree (and we have an FR on that) that Fink should have the 
ability to automatically retrieve sources from say if they are not available from the 
specified location, that would fix any missing source problems for 
the stable tree at least. Mirroring the sources for all our stable 
releases is definitly doable (and is actually done).

Just as a reminder, we are very different from Debian in some 
aspects. Fink is mainly about building packages from source. Debian 
is mainly about distrbuting packages as binaries. They just don't 
have to mirror all sources of all versions, since the sources are not 
that important. It's not necessary to keep all versions of a binary 
package either (this is not necessary for us either, luckily).

>>>You have a substantial binary distribution under stable today. I assumed
>>>that it could be supported with the same tool set.  Perhaps I'm wrong.
>>Yes you are wrong.
>Frequently.  And I'm not alone I see.

Just to clarify this (so that emotions don't cloud your view either 
:-) - this was not a personal remark. You said "I assumed that it 
could be supported with the same tool set". This was a wrong 
assumption, you wanted to know whether it is wrong, hence I told you. 
Point. That's all, really, no hidden meaning.


>>Well Fink asks you these interactive questsions at the beginning of 
>>the build. Don't see a fundamental difference there.
>There's a huge difference.  If a user were asked all of the 
>alternative questions up front and they were stored in a datafile, 
>then a user could build 50 packages non-interactively.  When builds 
>take days, being able to build without human intervention is very 
>useful.  If you don't want to implement this, don't, but don't 
>belittle someone who makes resonable observations just because they 
>aren't willing to do the work.  Good ideas are needed too.

Uhm, how did I belittle you? I only said that I don't see a 
fundemental difference. That contains no judgement at all, nor does 
it imply your idea is bad, it only means what it literally says - *I* 
didn't see it. I didn't claim it as a fact :-)

But to reply to what you wrote: I still don't quite see your point 
(and that again doesn't mean that I think you are 
stupid/wrong/whatever, just that I don't see what you mean and would 
like you to explain to me better - I can only use good ideas if I 
understand them, right?):

In Fink, right now one can do this:

   fink install bundle-gnome tetex-macosx ... foo bar... package50

And then press return. It will build all of the specified packages. 
If additional dependencies for these have to be fulfilled, then it 
will ask you to resolve these before starting building. Once you did 
this, Fink will proceed to build all selected packages. No further 
interacive input needed.

So, based on this, how would this be improved by what you suggested?

BTW, I do agree the build process is not perfect, because if the 
build of one package fails, Fink will not continue to build any of 
the other packages, even if it could (i.e. the failed package was no 
dependency). This is a thing that should be improved (not a trivial 
task though).


>Well, I'm sorry to hear that Apple is not cooperating with you.

Neither can't I sadly. Apple did for example sponsor two machines for 
SourceForge (they *paid* SF to host them actually). They are also 
seemingly trying everything to show they are supporting open source. 
But that doesn't change that currently they seem to ignore us.

>   I can't imagine why.  Your website implies a friendlier relationship.

You are refering to the FAQ I guess. Well, it's true that they told 
this to Christoph last year, and gave him an early copy (well... not 
that much early, but better than nothing) of 10.1 5G64. That's the 
last we heard of them :-) I am also not sure who exactly Christoph 
had contact with, and how "official" this was.

Guess we should rewrite that FAQ entry, it's not reflecting reality anymore.


>I never said it was work.  You're arguing with me for no reason. 
>I'm not volunteering to help you develop Fink, but that doesn't make 
>me worthy of derision.  You don't know what I do.  There are many 
>noble, time-consuming pursuits that don't involve developing open 
>source software.  None of this invalidates my ideas, of course.

I am sorry if you feel offended, but that was not my intention, nor 
do I think what I said was particulary offending. But let me say in 
different words what I meant: Of course the input of users like you 
and others is extremly valuable and helps to find a lot of bugs. But 
it is not sufficient. But OK, let's forget that for a sec. What 
remains is that a binary distro for unstable at this point would lead 
to more work (rewriting the tool chain for it), more work (building & 
releasing the unstable binaries), more work (handling many many more 
complaints & bug reports - more because many will be duplicates. I 
don't think we will actually find that much more bugs, only that we 
will hear about the same bugs more often); more work (ignoring all 
the flames we get for bugs - that's not that easy, if you spent a lot 
of your time on this stuff, hearing insults added on top isn't that 
easy to shrug off).
On the long run, though it would pay off, I am certain. But on the 
short & middle run, it will first add much more work.

Thus, I still believe an unstable binary distro would be nice, but my 
reasons are different from yours, and the importance I assign to it 
is different from yours, too. Right now, I think that making an 
unstable distro would be a mistake, since too many things are in flux 
right now, and too many things are missing in the infrastructure for 
it. Also, not enough resources are available to cope with the strain 
this would put on the Fink team. Once these things have changed, 
we'll tackle it. That was always the goal, BTW.

>Debian did not start big.  They grew due to the strength of their 
>ideas and their leadership.

Yup. And they didn't grow in one day, or even one year, either.

>>>  o  Make Fink-local copies of all source packages that Fink requires.
>>>  o  Fix the dependency problem in the evolution package.
>>Dude that's stupid, there will always be single packages with a 
>>problem, evolution is in no way special (maybe *you* think it's a 
>>very important package, but for one person you tell me that thinks 
>>the same I can tell you ten that doN#t think so).
>I'm beginning to see a pattern here.  First I'm being "vague" and 
>now I'm being "stupid".  In reality, I've been neither.  You 
>obviously have a problem accepting constructive criticism and that's 
>a shame.

I don't think you are stupid, and didn't want to imply though, sorry 
for my poor choice of words here.
I fully accept & take the criticism that the evolution package is 
buggy. I admited so in my first post, and in the past in various 
email threads I lead on two mailings lists, and in private with half 
a dozen people (if you like I can forward them all to you). But I 
don't see why you keep insisting on this particular package, hence I 
got annoyed (no excuse, just trying to explain how it was).

BTW, if you like I can also compile a list of all the buggy packages 
I ever wrote or put into CVS, etc., it's probably quite long. I know 
my weaknesses and know that I make mistakes (and sometimes extremly 
stupid errors) like anybody else. I am happy if people give me 
constructive criticism. But I don't like if they keep poking it into 
my eye and twisting the stick 8-)

>Max, I'll still thank you for all of the work you've done.  I still 
>appreciate it.  I just don't appreciate your attitude.

Sorry to hear that, although I think you are not really aware of what 
my attitude is - in my experience, email is a bad medium for 
controverse discussions, since you can't really see/hear/"feel" the 
emotions of the others in the dicussion, leading to serious 
misunderstandings. Be careful in how you judge me only based on what 
you *believe* I think or want to "imply" :-).


Max Horn
Software Developer

email: <mailto:[EMAIL PROTECTED]>
phone: (+49) 6151-494890

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