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Re: Auto-Generating ChangeLog and AUTHORS for projects in a version trac

From: Arne Babenhauserheide (IMK)
Subject: Re: Auto-Generating ChangeLog and AUTHORS for projects in a version tracking system?
Date: Thu, 30 Oct 2014 10:55:37 +0100
User-agent: Mozilla/5.0 (X11; Linux x86_64; rv:24.0) Gecko/20100101 Thunderbird/24.6.0

Am 30.10.2014 10:15, schrieb Diego Elio Pettenò:
> On 30 October 2014 06:45, Arne Babenhauserheide (IMK)
> <address@hidden> wrote:
>> Am 30.10.2014 00:43, schrieb Diego Elio Pettenò:
>> I don’t want to change the GNU style. I want to have an easier way to
>> *adhere to* the existing GNU style by providing default tool support for
>> creating the ChangeLog and AUTHORS file from versiontracking systems.
> Great. But people don't *want* to adhere to the GNU style, 

Do not want to adhere to the GNU style or do they not want to bother
with creating the files? There is a very important difference in
motivation: People from the first group get what they want with foreign
style. People from the latter group however would be happy to use GNU
style, if it did not create additional work for them.

This change is for the latter group, since the former group can already
switch to foreign style by just adding a single parameter.

> most people
> just end up creating 0-sized AUTHORS NEWS and ChangeLog files, because
> otherwise automake fails, and then they complain about autotools being
> messy and requiring useless boilerplate.

Autogenerating the AUTHORS and ChangeLog would reduce this to a single
0-sized file, because nowadays most people understand that a README is
important -- I think the same will happen for the NEWS file, once code
hosting platforms start using the NEWS file as source to provide
human-readable news about projects. Then this would eliminate the
0-sized files.

Best wishes,

PS: I know your autotools mythbuster: It helped me a lot in adding
distcheck-support for my projects. Example:
    Sadly much of my own autotools work also involved cargo-culting.
    Note: Here you note that autotools need COPYING,
          but this is created automatically nowadays.
          You only need to provide it if you don’t want to use the GPL.
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