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Re: cvswrappers - any better suggestions ?

From: David H. Thornley
Subject: Re: cvswrappers - any better suggestions ?
Date: Mon, 02 Apr 2001 09:56:28 -0500

"Greg A. Woods" wrote:
> [ On Sunday, April 1, 2001 at 08:26:32 (-0800), Gianni Mariani wrote: ]
> > Subject: RE: cvswrappers - any better suggestions ?
> >
> > Your discussion below exposes a perspective which is about as far off from
> > my own as you can get.  I will go as far to say that your goals are > 
> You people just don't get it.  CVS adheres to design principles that are
> completely contrary to your requirements.  You CANNOT succeed with it
> given your current goals!  It's irrelevant how many users have made the
> wrong choice and are using CVS despite the fact that its design is
> contrary to their goals.  A wrong choice is wrong no matter which side
> you look at it from.
Nope; CVS adheres to design principles that are at least somewhat
compatible with our requirements.  The fact that people are using
CVS for the management of binary files implies that somebody can
do it and be successful.  Nor do I understand why this is inherently
a wrong choice.  I can understand why it would be the wrong choice
under some given circumstances, but I have a great deal of difficulty
with moral absolutes in open-source software.

> Please go find some other software to abuse, and hopefully this time
> you'll choose some non-free software and you'll be able to pay it's
> maintainers to change their design if it doesn't happen to fit your
> goals!  Maybe you'll be lucky and you'll choose some non-free software
> that has a significant "market share" too.
Philosophically, this seems to be a Platonist approach to
software tools, and you're in a community of Aristotelians.
What this means is that I believe we don't have archetypes of
programming tools, in which CVS is judged on its similarity
to the archetype of program source control systems, but a whole
lot of existing tools, which are judged on certain criteria
(philosophically more accidental than essential) such as usefulness.

I apply this sort of philosophy for other tools, also.  I don't
wonder about how screwdrivery a screwdriver is, but rather how
easily it turns screws and how durable it's likely to be.  Given
a paint can, I don't go to the hardware store and buy a tool
to open paint cans, I pry off the lid with a screwdriver.  It
isn't designed to open paint cans, is not intended to, and is not
sold for the purpose.  I would assume it's harder to remove a
lid without bending it with a screwdriver than with a specially
designed tool (with a screwdriver, you have to pry gently around
the lid).  However, I have screwdrivers and a place to put them.
I don't want to buy and store a special paint can lid opening

Heck, I don't even want to write to tool manufacturers and tell
them that they need to make screwdrivers more paint-can-lid

David H. Thornley                          Software Engineer
at CES International, Inc.:  address@hidden or (763)-694-2556
at home: (612)-623-0552 or address@hidden or

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