On Sun, Jun 9, 2013 at 2:01 PM, John Keeping <j...@keeping.me.uk> wrote:
> On Sun, Jun 09, 2013 at 12:53:38PM -0500, Felipe Contreras wrote:
>> On Sun, Jun 9, 2013 at 12:37 PM, John Keeping <j...@keeping.me.uk> wrote:
>> > On Sun, Jun 09, 2013 at 07:33:42PM +0200, SZEDER Gábor wrote:
>> >> On Sun, Jun 09, 2013 at 12:23:01PM -0500, Felipe Contreras wrote:
>> >> > On Sun, Jun 9, 2013 at 12:18 PM, SZEDER Gábor <sze...@ira.uka.de> wrote:
>> >> > > On Sun, Jun 09, 2013 at 11:40:22AM -0500, Felipe Contreras wrote:
>> >> > >> We should free objects before leaving.
>> >> > >>
>> >> > >> Signed-off-by: Felipe Contreras <felipe.contre...@gmail.com>
>> >> > >
>> >> > > A shortlog-friendlier subject could be: "sequencer: free objects
>> >> > > before leaving".
>> >> >
>> >> > I already defended my rationale for this succinct commit message:
>> >> >
>> >> > http://thread.gmane.org/gmane.comp.version-control.git/225609/focus=225610
>> >>
>> >> Your arguments were unconvincing.  The mere fact that I raised this
>> >> issue unbeknownst to the earlier posting clearly shows that there's
>> >> demand for descriptive subjects.
>> >
>> > Not to mention that with your subject no body is needed, making the
>> > overall message more succinct.
>> It's not succinct at all, because there's no short and quick
>> description of what the patch actually is; a trivial fix.
> Is it not equally succinct to say "fix memory leak"?

Almost. "fix memory leak" doesn't say anything about the scope; it can
be a huge change, or a trivial one.

Perhaps "trivial memory leak fix" would be better.

>> > When reading a log, as soon as I see "trivial" I become suspicious that
>> > someone is trying to cover something up, much like "left as an exercise
>> > for the reader".  If the subject says "fix memory leak" then it's
>> > obvious what the patch is meant to do, and when there is no subtlety to
>> > be explained (as there isn't in this patch) there is no need for a body.
>> You are not a rational person then. The commit message has absolutely
>> no bearing on the quality of the code. If you are less suspicious of a
>> commit message that says "fix memory leak", you are being completely
>> biased.
>> Whether the commit message says "fix memory leak", or "trivial fix",
>> or "foobar", the code might still be doing something wrong, and you
>> can't decide that until you look at the code.
> I have a certain level of trust that commit summaries in git.git will be
> accurate.  If I want to know what has changed, then "fix memory leak"
> implies "no functional change"; if I see "trivial fix" then how do I
> know what that is?

It is a trivial fix, that's what it is. You don't need to bother
yourself with it. Unless you plan to see the code.

> It could be a whitespace change,

That's not a fix, that's a cleanup.

> a fix to a memory leak, a typo correction, a change to a separator in a 
> message shown to
> the user,

You might be right, but I don't think you _need_ to know which one of
them it is; they are all trivial. In 90% of the cases you want to skip
them and keep reading. In the 10% where you do need more, well, you
probably need to look at the code either way.

> or even a small change to corner case behaviour.

That's not trivial.

>> If you don't care about the code, but still want to know what the
>> patch is doing, then you can look at the whole commit message, and "We
>> should free objects before leaving." explains that perfectly.
> The short message is what appears in "What's Cooking", why should I need
> to break out of my mail client to find out what it means?

You don't, it's a trivial fix, and you said you have a certain level
of trust on commit summaries ;)

Felipe Contreras
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