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Re: NEWS entries -- user-visible?

From: Neil Jerram
Subject: Re: NEWS entries -- user-visible?
Date: Sun, 14 Jun 2009 23:41:06 +0100
User-agent: Gnus/5.11 (Gnus v5.11) Emacs/22.2 (gnu/linux)

Julian Graham <address@hidden> writes:

> Hi Andy,
> As mentioned on IRC, I bet there are ways to pitch these changes to
> make them comprehensible to users.  I think you're right to ditch the
> second one, but for the first and third:
>>    ** Guile now uses Gnulib as a portability aid
> ** Guile now uses components from Gnulib for portability to a wider
> variety of POSIX and non-POSIX systems.

I see where you're heading with this, but for me this NEWS item still
isn't specific enough to mean anything to a user.

It seems we're aiming towards saying:

** Guile now runs correctly on more platforms.  Since the 1.8.x
   series, support for the following platforms has been added: A, B,

But (1) I'm not sure we have precise information to hand on what A, B
and C are; and there's no value in the NEWS item without the detail.

And (2) to be honest there is no such thing as "runs correctly".  What
we really mean is that we've fixed particular portability-related bugs
on particular platforms by using Gnulib.  And we really ought to have
- and in most cases I think we already do have - specific NEWS items
for each of those bugs.

So, overall, I'm not persuaded that there's any value in this item.

>>    ** Primitive procedures with more than 3 arguments (aka. "gsubrs") are
>>    no longer implemented using the "compiled closure" mechanism.  This
>>    simplifies code and reduces both the storage and run-time overhead.
> ** Primitive procedures accepting more than 3 arguments now execute
> faster and consume less memory.

Here, on the other hand, I now agree with you; this is likely to be
interest to application developers.  It would be even better if it had
a pointer to where to find more details - even a mailing list thread
or a commit, if there's nothing better?


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