On Sun, 17 Apr 2005, Linus Torvalds wrote:
> Yes. I'm not opposed to yours, I was just opposed to some of the things 
> around it you did, so I wrote mine as a kind of place-holder. I'll happily 
> take patches to turn it from a rally simple and stupid one into a more 
> polished version.

Btw, before I forget - I did have another reason. I actually think that
the date is potentially a lot more important than "how many parents deep".

In particular, it's entirely possible that the top of my head might be a
veru recent merge that merges with a small fix relative to a very old
parent (making that old parent be just two hops away from the head), while
the thing I want to merge might also have that old parent (for similar
reasons) as a relatively "close" parent from a pure link-counting

The reason I bring this up is that quite often people end up basing their
work on a specific release version, so a merge (especially in specialized
areas) may thus bring such an old parent pretty close to the head, and it
can actually be quite possible (indeed probable) that such a parent ends
up being a common parent.

However, it can easily be a very _bad_ parent.

In ascii barfic:

                ----------------------- patch ---------
               /                                        \
              /                                          \
        - old release -- ... lots of development .. -----HEAD
             \  \
              \  \
               \  ---------------------patch-- MERGE-HEAD      
                \                             /
                  .. lots of development ..  /

it looks like "old release" is pretty close to both HEAD and MERGE-HEAD, 

But that's just an artifact of the fact that they both had a trivial merge
against some older code, and if the two "lots of development" things have
ever done an earlier merge, there's quite possibly a _much_ better common
parent there somewhere.

I dunno.

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