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RE: [Axiom-developer] Unit package question

From: Page, Bill
Subject: RE: [Axiom-developer] Unit package question
Date: Wed, 24 Aug 2005 22:50:04 -0400

C Y,

> Bill Page wrote:
> >
> > The authors (and other interested parties!) are invited to review
> > these wiki pages and update/correct/edit them as seems appropriate.
> > New pages on this subject can also easily be added. I would like
> > these pages to gradually evolve to reflect design decisions and
> > trial code segments as this package is developed.

On Wednesday, August 24, 2005 10:20 PM you asked:

> Do you want a complete summary of the email list discussions, or
> just the ones that seem to lead to what eventually becomes the
> final design?

I think the summary should be more *constructive* and *synthetic*
rather than archival. It should accurately reflect (within reason)
the current understanding of the problem and solution - not the
history - except perhaps for attribution of relevant ideas to
original authors etc. This usually means that some (now irrelevant)
parts of the discussion, proposals and experimental code should
actually be deleted after the direction is clear and more

> (I must confess I'm not really sure how archiving of Axiom's
> email system works, since I just save most of them myself on
> my machine in Kmail)

All axiom-developer emails (including notices of changes on the
MathAction wiki) are archived at:

This is the primary and complete archive. There are also a few
other places on the web where our discussions are duplicated,
e.g. gmane.

> - should the wiki be used to preserve discarded ideas and the
> reasons they were discarded, or just focus on what is eventually
> accepted and provide links to the full discussion?

I say definitely just the latter: focus on what is eventually
accepted and what remains controversial. Eliminate the stuff
in between.

> If the email archive is stable and readily available it would
> probably be cleaner to focus the wiki page on the actual workable
> design related emails, with links to the discussion tree for other
> stuff.)

I think the Internet email archives are very stable. Although like
you, for convenience I often rely more on my own local archive of
these emails, after several system upgrades, failures and re-
organization I now find that my personal archive is less reliable

So I agree that the wiki pages should focus on actual workable
design ideas. Often the original text of the emails also has to
be adjusted periodically to use the current terminology etc. It
often takes more time to be concise and accurate so that someone
can quickly understand the main points (that what the wiki pages
are good for), rather than just record the complete and verbose
history (that's what the dumb archives are good for).

> Good idea!

Thanks. I hope that it helps your project. Please feel free to
change and edit the contents of these pages as suits your own
purposes. :)

Bill Page.

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