update stream policy

Julian Fitzell julian at beta4.com
Sun Jan 18 18:04:41 UTC 2004

Ned Konz wrote:
> On Sunday 18 January 2004 7:27 am, ducasse wrote:
>>By the way the starting point was about having Tests (the active and
>>always synchronised
>>documentation) close to the code they document in the image for the
>>image. For the package
>>each maintainer has to care of the tests related to his stuff.
> But "close to the code" doesn't have to mean "shipped as part of the 
> distribution image itself". We have a number of mechanisms for making content 
> (including tests) available; I don't think that released images themselves 
> need to contain tests.
> After all, only a small part of the Squeak community is programmers.

Right.  This is what I was saying to Stef in the previous thread a few 
weeks ago.  "I want to tests to be easily available" is a goal.  "I want 
to tests to be easily available by being in the distributed image" seems 
to me to be a goal combined with a possible solution.  If we can step 
back from the possible solution and just look at the goal, then we can 
work to figure out what other solutions might meet that goal.

This may mean better tool support, adding obvious menu links to get the 
tests, etc, etc.  The problem is, I'm still not clear *exactly* what the 
goal is, and so it's hard to determine whether any particular approach 
is actually an acceptable solution.

For example, I *think* the goal is something like "All developers should 
have very easy access to all the tests for the image.  While working on 
code, they should be able to access the individual tests that exercise 
that code.  It should be very easy for these developers to modify or add 
tests and publish them back to the community.  It should also be easy 
(or even automatic?) for the published tests to be integrated into 
wherever the tests are being kept."  Does this seem close to what we're 
trying to achieve?

If we can all get clear on what the goal is, then those of us who are 
unhappy with the proposed solution can put our efforts towards 
suggesting alternatives rather than just wasting bandwidth arguing over 
the proposed solution.

> I do think that it may make sense to have tests available in alpha images 
> because (presumably) most of the users of alpha images will be programmers.

I would like to see this met by making them "available" in some way 
other than putting them in the update stream, but again, let's try to 
establish the goal before going any farther.

I've kept out of this discussion until now, because I already had it 
with Stef a few weeks ago.  I wanted to post this because I think it's a 
fine distinction that can get lost in the heat of a debate.  If we can 
start discussing a goal, then I think we can get some creative minds at 
work coming up with a solution that makes everyone happy.  If we're just 
going to keep debating the one solution of putting things in the image 
to make them available, then I think I'll just stand back and watch the 
discussion go in circles.


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