[racket-dev] Migrating the bug database to GitHub

From: Sam Tobin-Hochstadt (samth at ccs.neu.edu)
Date: Sun Mar 18 21:37:57 EDT 2012

On Sat, Mar 17, 2012 at 10:55 AM, Eli Barzilay <eli at barzilay.org> wrote:
> The real issue is whether it's really alright with you...  Currently,
> something that I do and I'm sure others do it to, is keep the bug in my
> mailbox with any followup discussions.  In some cases the followups contain
> enough information so I'll keep only that and not the original.  With the
> github thing, if you get to deal with a bug several days after it was
> posted, it will be a good idea to check the bug since there could have been
> clarifications that you're unaware of.

This is regularly the case with bugs in Gnats currently, although
probably less often than on GitHub.  If you don't cc bug-notification,
then only the assignee and the reporter see the email, which is
*fewer* people than on GitHub.

This is also more significant for contributors not among the people
who are on the bug-notification list.  Right now, they won't be
notified at all about changes to gnats bugs unless they're the
submitter.  With GitHub, all commenters are treated the same.

> And since attachments were mentioned: a possible situation is that someone
> posts a bug, the bug czar asks for some clarification, and the email reply
> has a screenshot which GH ignores.  In that case you will need to get that
> attachment directly from one of the people.  The outcome of this is that
> it's better to leave stepper bugs for you to deal with instead, and the "bug
> czar" role is minimized to just assigning bugs or maybe not even that and it
> gets eliminated.

This is not how I envision the process working.  Instead, I hope that
people use services like `gist.github.com' and `imgur.com' to post
large documents and images, and embed links in bug emails.  This makes
the online record much more useful -- gnats storage of email
attachments is very difficult to work with.  I hope to provide command
line tools and/or DrRacket tools to make this easy.

As to the "bug czar" role (which I currently have), I think of my role
as to facilitate people working on software, including fixing bugs.
I've planned this move to GitHub because I think it will help both me
and other people developing Racket with doing this.  As part of that,
I still plan to triage every bug to someone, and to be responsible for
contacting bug reporters.  I don't think this is a role that will go
away -- bugs need human supervision, and I'm planning to continue
providing it.
sam th
samth at ccs.neu.edu

Posted on the dev mailing list.