Mailinglist Archive: opensuse-project (783 mails)

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Re: [opensuse-project] Decision making for the distribution
  • From: Alberto Passalacqua <alberto.passalacqua@xxxxxx>
  • Date: Tue, 04 Aug 2009 11:31:39 -0500
  • Message-id: <1249403499.8141.36.camel@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
Please provide an example where voting brought to some really good
decision at openSUSE.

It usually leads to endless discussions without a clear decision, and
forces to compromises which are often not in the interest of the
distribution. You don't have to take "open decisions" in an open
project. You need to take decisions in the interest of the project, the
fact that they are open or not does not matter much. So, to make it
short, I agree with what Druid said.


Il giorno mar, 04/08/2009 alle 15.14 +0200, Lars Marowsky-Bree ha
On 2009-08-04T09:58:37, Druid <marcio.ferreira@xxxxxxxxx> wrote:

I dont think voting works. Maybe the decision should be made by a
technical commitee, or the release manager, or the board, I dont know.
But wide vote I dont believe it works at all.

This is quite opposite to the literature, by the way. Decision-markets,
through polling a large audience and aggregating the results, deliver
excellent and empirically sound feedback on the usefulness of features.
They're an excellent and open way of gathering "market research" data.
Compared to focus groups or expert panels, they have a pretty good
accuracy, are cheaper to setup, and by definition "more open".

Of course, you must describe them properly (ie, use case/benefit, not
the detailed technical specification) - users are the wrong group to
vote on the _implementation_, but the only group that can reliably vote
on the usefulness.

Now it's true that some aspects of voting in bugzilla aren't appropriate
for this - for example, decision markets try to avoid feedback loops, so
the votes from other users shouldn't necessarily be exposed, but those
are more or less implementation details.

I can dig out some references in case someone is really interested.

But "expert judgment", in particular if it is only one expert, has -
both for market research and effort estimation, by the way - an
extremely bad track record, yet it often is the best (-> only) tool we
have, which is somewhat of a pity.


Architect Storage/HA, OPS Engineering, Novell, Inc.
SUSE LINUX Products GmbH, GF: Markus Rex, HRB 16746 (AG Nürnberg)
"Experience is the name everyone gives to their mistakes." -- Oscar Wilde

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