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bug tracking system (was: mini-HOWTO)

On Sun, Jan 30, 2000 at 01:15:01PM +0000, Terry Dawson wrote:
> David Lawyer wrote:
> > Since LDP doesn't deal with documentation on specific software, there
> > just aren't any "upstream" authors.  Would we try to recruit upstream
> > authors who would give their docs both to LDP and other organizations?
> > Wouldn't it be simpler the way it works now?
> David,
> The "upstream" author in the context I intended it would represent
> authors of any document that the LDP wished to use. The idea suggested
> was that LDP people could take these documents and munge them into
> whatever form the LDP required... these people would be the analogs of
> the Debian packagers ..

I think it would save us a lot of work to get them to turn their docs
into LDP docs and help them do this if required.  Suppose they submit
a new update every month in their own format which we need to munge.
That's a lot of work for us.  To encourage them to put it into sgml,
we need to make this as simple as possible.  We might put their doc
(or at least the first page of it) into say linuxdoc and then ask them
to continue with it.

> > I would rather keep the present direct contact system rather than a
> > bug reporting system.  Often feedback is neither a bug nor a
> > suggestion.  It's a question.  If this question was not answered in
> > the HOWTO (or well enough explained), then the HOWTO may need to be
> > modified.  If you have a bug tracking system, will questions be
> > allowed?
> I personally can't see any good reason why not. I'd like 5c for every
> time I'd been asked the same question again and again and again and
> again. If people wishing to contribute feedback had the opportunity to
> search to see if that feedback had already been given (with a response)
> then it might save everyone a lot of effort.
If people ask the same question repeatedly, then the answer should be
put into the HOWTO asap with emphasis on it (perhaps with a subsection
heading, etc.).  Then you point these people to the doc.

The feedback you propose will likely contain a lot of noise and be
tedious to search.  For example, people often write me about something
that I don't know the answer for.  Perhaps their problem is due to
some bug in the software or hardware (but I have no way of knowing
this).  Usually they do not adequately define the environment in which
their problem occurs.  It may be outside the scope of the HOWTO etc.
People want answers and while they may search and find a mention of
their problem, they may not find any answer.  I would classify much of
the feedback as noise and the good parts of the feedback often result
in changes to the HOWTO.  So I don't think there is much of a need for
keeping unedited feedback.

Now if authors/maintainer want to edit their feedback (including
deleting a number of items that would be of no help) that's something
that might be a good idea if the author has time.  Still, it should be
higher priority to maintain the HOWTO.  So my conclusion is that we
have more important projects to work on, one of which is to automate
the submission of HOWTOs which still hasn't been done.  
                David Lawyer

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