[vdr] VDR Development

Hans Werner HWerner4 at gmx.de
Sat Sep 6 19:20:41 CEST 2008


-------- Original-Nachricht --------
> Datum: Sat, 06 Sep 2008 18:01:48 +0200
> Von: Udo Richter <udo_richter at gmx.de>
> An: VDR Mailing List <vdr at linuxtv.org>
> Betreff: Re: [vdr] VDR Development

> Hans Werner wrote:
> > Sourcecaps I believe has existed as a patch for about four *years* and
> > has it's own web page. Absolutely ridiculous. I am lost for words.
> 
> So I guess mythtv has something like that, right?

Kaffeine looks like it does (in dvbrc you see: "DVB0_LNB0_source=Astra-19.2E,Hotbird-13.0E" and
you can have multiple DVB cards).

Not sure about MythTV but don't underestimate it.

Anyway the point is that VDR almost has this nice capability, but sadly it is not quite
there, because sourcecaps only exists as a patch. Something is wrong.

> 
> Also, I've never heard of anyone doing a more general patch that also 
> integrates things like the lnbsharing patch, or allowing different 
> diseqc setups for different cards.

I think you are suggesting that there are improvements beyond
sourcecaps+lnbsharing which could be made. Definitely, but how many steps
away from the current release do you think someone is willing to develop?

Patches should be short term tools for moving code into a repository, nothing
more. After that you carry on and work on further improvements.

> So much for developers that would 
> contribute if there just was a public repository. The same developers 
> could already write patches and improve them until they match Klaus' 
> quality needs.

The current system is not as encouraging and predictable as it should be
regarding merging of innovations into the mainstream, so there is a barrier to that
innovation.

The way things are done in VDR means that patches can languish for years
without getting merged into the mainstream.  If I had written sourcecaps or
lnbsharing I would be very upset that my (clearly useful) work had been ignored
and not merged into the mainstream.

If the development system were more welcoming to improvements (and 
predictable about merging patches) then there would be far more good work
done. Everyone wants some quality control, but, and it may surprise some
people, quality and high speed development are possible at the same time.
In many ways it is easier for developers to solve big difficult problems in one
big quick push because the whole problem stays in memory.

A more subtle point is that patches are not necessarily independent -- you 
don't really know if there are any unexpected consequences of applying 
more than one patch until you try them all together. It's nonsense to put patches
on websites for people to pull in as needed -- once you have more than one patch
the result is undefined. 

So it is actually essential at some point to put all patches together in one place and
start debugging the whole project. 

And that is what a repository is for.

Hans
-- 
Release early, release often.

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