Kommandeering Developers Everywhere

Thursday, September 15, 2005

Recursive meritocracy?

The merit karma of the participants battle it out to determine the formula to gauge the merit karma of the bug filers.

Like sports fans helplessly watching events unfold with their favorite team on the television, so do casual bug reports tremble with anticipation at their assigned ranking.

"Wade Olson: Your rank shall be -1. All of your reports will be routed to /dev/null. Go about your business."

I love these 'mailing list' discussions on the blog. There's an article percolating in the back of my head about the growing pains of KDE. With the argument of "we work on what we like, if you want something, here's a manual" slowly fading away, KDE (due to its own success) is faced with typical business/non-profit resource allocation issues. Must do vs. Can do Vs. Should do Vs. Want to do. Cage match!

Bug tracking/documentation/translation doesn't turn a lot of people's cranks, but such attention to detail can alter the trajectory of KDE's path through the stratosphere. And the analogy is about the atmospheric layer between the troposphere and the mesosphere, not the ultralame Las Vegas hotel.

So keep the ideas and debates coming. If there wasn't any contention, KDE wouldn't be growing and wouldn't be feeling any external pressure. Just put some tape over the "Hobby-to-Job" meter next to your monitor.

My idea to lob into the fracass: Add a reporter_type table that hold values such as "Packager", "Distro", "Individual", "Contributor", "Standard", etc. Give every reporter in bugzilla a reporter_type of "Standard" and modify acounts of specific people as you see fit. Then change some pages like http://bugs.kde.org/query.cgi to allow querying based on reporter_type. If you want to use the system as is, that's cool. If you want to search for more "likely to be quality" bugs such as packagers, go ahead.

Either way, a massive ticket closing session will have to be done closer to the next release as I'm curious how many bugs will no longer be valid after a year of coding and a Qt4.0 port.


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