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[Monotone-devel] news and survey

From: graydon hoare
Subject: [Monotone-devel] news and survey
Date: Tue, 01 Feb 2005 02:31:25 -0500
User-agent: Mozilla Thunderbird 1.0 (X11/20041206)


this email has two parts. part 1 is a news update, and part 2 is a
survey. it's been about 2 years since I first published monotone and I
figure it's time to find out what people have been using it for, if

part 1: news

I'm going away on vacation for a few months, and moving to a new town
when I come back, so after february I won't be really able to answer
many questions on monotone or offer a lot of input until probably june
or july of this year. depending on network connectivity and boredom
while on vacation I might check in, but equally I might not (if europe
is as fun as I remember)

while I'm away, I'm going to hand over the bits and pieces of
administrative stuff I do to njs, such as posting package builds to my
website or firing off announcements. I hope nobody takes
this as a snub; it's boring, tedious, chore-like stuff and he
volunteered to do it anyways.

another month has passed so it's probably getting near time for a 0.17
release. there has been great progress since 0.16, and almost none of
it was my work this time (aside from speeding up netsync and merging a
couple branches other people wrote). this is incredibly satisfying for
me to see. the amount of QA work and polish njs, dscherger and msh
have put in is really amazing, and christof has contributed branch
after branch of important features. the program is rapidly maturing.

in order to work out any kinks which might arise during packaging and
uploading from njs' machine rather than mine, I'm going to try to get
him do the 0.17 release process while I'm still around. I know he has
a lot of bugs he wants to work out still, so I'll leave a precise
choice of readyness to him. he'll probably need a volunteer to to the
windows build, and possibly the fedora build as well. er.. and the OSX
one. heck, if you've got a normal build-y setup of monotone working on
*any* platform, perhaps it'd be good to reply here so njs can take
your name down.

part 2: survey

I saw the valgrind developers do something a while back which I really
respected: they formally surveyed their users, to try to figure out
what they were doing well, what they were doing poorly, and what to
focus on. I think that's an excellent idea so I'm going to do the same
thing. if you've been using monotone for a while, I'd really
appreciate it if you could just fill this in and mail it back to me in
private. a fair amount of it is cribbed from the valgrind survey. I'll
try to summarize the results in as useful a form as possible and post a
tidied up version. aside from places where I specifically ask for
publicizing-permission, I won't publish any of the raw answers.


--- snip snip ---

- when you heard of monotone:
- how you heard of monotone:
- when you tried monotone:
- first impressions:
- any comments on our public appearance:

- do you get monotone from ...
  - our development netsync servers:
  - our website:
  - an independent package or port:

- do you use monotone on ...
  - windows:
  - linux:
  - OSX:
  - solaris:
  - other (specify):

- do we release ...
  - often enough:
  - too often:

- for each project you've used monotone on, which you care to mention
  the details of ...
  - name / URL of project (optional):
  - nature of project (internal, public, etc.):
  - rough size of ...
    - working copy:
    - full database:
  - number of revisions in project:
  - number of programmers in project:
  - number of locations programmers work from:
  - proportion of project members using monotone on ...
    - windows:
    - linux:
    - OSX:
    - solaris:
    - other (specify):
  - other VC tools you've used on project:
  - whether monotone fared better or worse:
  - whether we should mention / link to your project as
    an example of "someone using monotone successfully":

- for each other version control tool you've used ...
  - name of other tool:
  - platform:
  - proprietary / free:
  - ways monotone was comparatively ...
    - better:
    - worse:
    - equal:
  - how important would interoperability be ...
    - importing snapshots in the tool's format:
    - exporting snapshots in the tool's format:
    - ongoing bi-directional synchronization:

- list which monotone commands do you use ...
  - frequently:
  - occasionally:
  - infrequently:

- impressions of features:
  - list the top 3 missing features of monotone:
  - list the top 3 most annoying features of monotone:
  - list the top 3 most pleasing features of monotone:

- impressions of documentation:
  - list the top 3 missing pieces of documentation:
  - list the top 3 worst parts of the documentation:
  - list the top 3 most helpful parts of the documentation:

- have you experienced data loss using monotone:
- have you experienced other types of serious faults
  when using monotone:
- do you find the frequency and/or difficulty of migration
  activities unacceptably bad when ...
  - changing schema versions:
  - changing from pre-changeset -> changeset:
  - rebuilding the revision graph:
- is there anything we could do to make the migration or
  data preservation mechanisms in monotone stronger or
  more pleasant:

- do you use monotone with ...
  - home-made shell scripts:
  - a web frontend (specify):
  - a GUI (specify):
  - some other tools:

- do you use ...
  - a single, central netsync server:
  - multiple dedicated netsync servers:
  - ad-hoc synchronization between clients:

- where would you like to see monotone go in the next year:

- general comments on the project:

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