There's only one possible way! A-A-P! (A good match for Ape, Shane ;) It's a replacement for make by Bram Moolenaar, the author of Vim, and it looks like it does a lot of things Right.
In fact, Aap would fit very well with Gentoo. Gentoo's emerge system takes care of package metadata, fetching the source, and unpacking it. Once it's unpacked, it gets compiled, usually with the standard .configure; make; make install steps. Individual packages could use aap instead of make. Actually, Aap also takes care of the fetching phase. Then Gentoo installs the compiled package, keeping track of what files went where, so that they can be uninstalled, and queried for what package they belong to. This Aap doesn't do, AFAIK.
-- Jean Jordaan http://www.upfrontsystems.co.za
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