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Linux is not about choice [was Re: Fedora too cutting edge?]



> Linux is about choice.

If I could only have one thing this year, it would be to eliminate that
meme from the collective consciousness.  It is a disease.  It strangles
the mind and ensures you can never change anything ever because someone
somewhere has OCD'd their environment exactly how they like it and how
dare you change it on them you're so mean and next time I have friends
over for Buffy night you're not invited mom he's sitting on my side
again.

As a consumer, yes, you have lots of choices in which Linux you use.
This does not mean Linux is in any sense _about_ choice, any more than
because there are so many kinds of cars you can buy that cars are about
choice.

The complaints up-thread about juju and pulse are entirely valid, but
the solution is not to try to deliver two things at once.  If you try to
deliver both at once you have to also deliver a way of switching between
the two.  Now you have three moving parts instead of one, which means
the failure rate has gone up by a factor of _six_ (three parts, and
three interactions).  We have essentially already posited that we have
insufficient developer effort to have 100%-complete features at ship
time, so asking them to take on six times the failure rate when they're
already overburdened is just madness.  Alternatively, we could say that
we're integrating features too rapidly, but you do that at the expense
of goal 1, to be the showcase for the latest and greatest in free
software.

Software is hard.  The way to fix it is to fix it, not sweep it under
the rug.

There is a legitimate discussion to be had about where and how we draw
the line for feature inclusion, about how we increase and formalize our
testing efforts, and about how we develop and deploy spike solutions for
corner-case problems like the one device class that juju happens to do
worse than the old stack.  But the chain of logic from "Linux is about
choice" to "ship everything and let the user chose how they want their
sound to not work" starts with fallacy and ends with disaster.

- ajax


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