On 1/16/07, Sven Neumann <[EMAIL PROTECTED]> wrote:

> 2.6 has an even minor version number so it's obviously a stable release

Obvious only to people who don't need to ask.

> series. It will most probably use GEGL at a few places internally, but [...]
> 2.6 is to finish some stuff that wasn't completed in time for 2.4 and to
> start porting the core to GEGL. Perhaps we should also start porting the
> display code to Cairo. But that depends on whether someone wants to work
> on this or not.

Something to consider, I think, is momentum.  I think that people want
to be part of a vibrant developer community.  If a project does not
have this, it may be beneficial to create an artificial one by
increasing the number of releases.  To this end, it may be wise to
make future releases more "bite-sized":  2.6 implements CMS workflow
and fixes 2.4 problems.  2.8 introduces Cairo rendering.  And then 3.0
can integrate GEGL.

GEGL of course has the same problem (limited developers) so it may be
wise to do some partial integration where reasonable through the 2.x
series to help keep that project going - people want to see the
results of their efforts.  More releases furthers this goal, and also
entices new users to try the new features.  This can create a nice
feedback loop where lots of little changes can be cleaned up across
each release.  I don't think that additional stable releases further
this goal because the GIMP generally just works.  Bug fixes here and
there just aren't exciting.

Now, I'm not trying to be so bold as to propose a schedule, but it
seems that if there were three or four releases this year - 2.4 now,
then 2.6, 2.8, and maybe a 2.10 - that's roughly four months per
release.  Asking people to "wait for the next release to include your
plugin" doesn't sound so severe then.  The biggest burden I think
would fall to the translators, which is something that developers just
need to be sensitive to.

The 3.0 release doesn't have to be so quick, assuming that GEGL
integration upsets things.  If timed properly, it may be wise to adapt
a schedule to the Google summer of code program.  The implication then
being that this would complete summer 2009.  Of course, that also
means that this has to be a reasonable SoC project.

Finally, in relation to my first comment, every mailing list has its
share of hostile people.  If developers truly want a large and vibrant
development community, somebody needs to be a welcoming beacon.
Condenscending remarks (blah blah is _obvious_) are damaging to that
goal.  There needs to be a consistent voice that welcomes masses of
newbies asking "dumb questions" in hopes that some kernel within that
mass are new GIMP developers that just need a little nurturing.  (If
it _should_ be obvious to someone, replying privately is better
because the tone of the list matters.)

Also, and this is related to above, I think we (all) should recognize
the growing numbers of people running free software on non-free
platforms and realize that they are important parts of the user base.
Linux, for example, is not as scary to people who are already familiar
with and use its software.  But in order for them to use that
software, it has to be a good experience on that non-free platform.
"You mean if I buy a computer with Linux it already has the GIMP
installed?  Great!"

For your consideration,
Chris
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