[Xapian-devel] Xapian Github Organization

Dan Colish dcolish at gmail.com
Mon Oct 8 16:36:56 BST 2012

Olly Betts <olly at survex.com> writes:

> On Mon, Sep 03, 2012 at 08:34:45AM -0700, Dan Colish wrote:
>> Well at the moment, we're really still using SVN so this discussion
>> might not be ready to happen. If we are going to use a github org to
>> host our repos, git should be the SPOT.
> I'm not keen to have the master git repo hosted on a proprietary
> platform.  It's a pattern the Free/Open Source Software community seems
> to fall into repeatedly, and has lead to problems before (ironically one
> such instance was the reason git was created in the first place).
> As well as the "host on Free Software" point, self-hosting gives us more
> flexibility, so I think I'd favour that over somewhere like gitorious or
> repo.or.cz.  If there's some tool we want to install, it's easy to do if
> we self-host.
> I'm OK with having mirrors of the git tree at places like github (like
> we already do), but I don't think we should make it the master location.

The pattern exists because of the many social features available on
github. I would be happy to use any tool which allows us to market and
build our community. The main benefit I see is being able to be a highly
"Watched" or "Forked" project. Some projects which are hosted soley on
Github have over a thousand watches and hundreds of forks. If you want
an example of a project which is widely used and only mirrors to github,
look at GHC[1]. It's an example of what I think those "watched" or
"forked" stats are worth; next to nothing. GHC still manages to
cultivate an extremely large user base without Github's help. 

I do not care where we host our code, because I already have my own
clone. I can share this code on github, repo.or.cz, gitorious, or over
email. In fact, email is an excellent conduit for sharing git patches;
it is how git was originally designed.

What I do want is to make browsing code, obtaining code, tracking
changes, and filing bug and feature requests as easy as possible. It
should have a simple authentication system with support for existing
Oauth solutions. It should support mobile and desktop browsers. It must
be flexible enough to match our workflow. Co-hosting documentation is a
must as well. It must be searchable for all documentation, tickets, and
commit history. It needs to have a flexible design which we can
customize to make an enticing and exciting homepage.

I want the ability to market and promote Xapian better. I want to see
more developers choose Xapian over the competing projects. I want to see
new developers coming on and working with us to maintain and improve the
code base. I want our large community of users to feel more engaged and
share their experiences. I think we've shown a need for a larger
community; look at how minimal the dev is when Olly is away. 

If we want to talk about ideal solutions for project management I could
go on for quite a while. However, we have a limited amount of time to
decide. I do not think this is a trivial decision of where we want to
place the code. I think we should take this opportunity to decide what
platform will help us promote and grow Xapian more.

[1] https://github.com/ghc/ghc


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