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Re: [avr-gcc-list] Focus of this list

From: Jason Kyle
Subject: Re: [avr-gcc-list] Focus of this list
Date: Sat, 17 Aug 2002 21:24:49 +1200

A response from the avr-gcc-list admin:

At 17:05 16/08/2002 -0700, Mike Tsao wrote:

This is a great list with many valuable contributors, and I don't believe
anyone has abused it since I subscribed about six months ago. The
signal-to-noise ratio is very high, which is rare and commendable for any

You are quite correct and everyone here should give themselves a pat on the back for being such a worthy group.

But I am sure I'm not the only one to notice that we get many questions
having to do with the C language itself, or GCC in general, rather than this
list's topic (which I believe to be stated on the avr1.org website as being
"for anyone and everyone who is interested in building projects using the
Atmel AVR microcontroller"). It's fair to interpret this phrase as limiting
discussion to Atmel- or AVR-specific development questions, rather than
allowing any general question encountered while developing for AVR.

Ok, list admin is at fault a little here as when I moved this list from my own server to an ISP running majordomo instead of GNU Mailman I now realise I never included the list topic text. What you are interpreting as the list topic is actually avr1.org's purpose statement, not specifically any particular content or service.

This is the avr-gcc-list topic text as per January 2001:

The avr-gcc list is intended as a forum for discussion about the following:
Programming technique
Installation and distributions
Hints and tips
Other avr-gcc related stuff

General rules are:
Be kind, respect others
No Attachments
No html in email

Jason Kyle

I really don't want to single out anyone who asked such questions recently,
and I apologize in advance to the unlucky few who do feel singled out. This
has happened on avr-gcc as long as I can remember, so singling out would be
unfair and meaningless. Moreover, the lines are gray -- most people first
encounter the "volatile" keyword when dealing with interrupts or
multithreaded code, and they also first encounter interrupts during embedded
development, so it's hard to blame someone for thinking their AVR uC or
compiler is broken because their variable won't change.

Of course some of these questions seem so obvious you may feel they can be answered by other means, but i'm sure those that ask have done their homework and are genuinely stuck. To date not one complaint regarding such questions has been received by the list admin (me).

Rather than starting a flame war, may I suggest a productive way of dealing
with the problem? Will the members of the list please name similar web
resources where it's appropriate to ask general C and GCC questions? We
recently danced around this issue when discussing the scope of the proposed
AVR-GCC FAQ, but I don't recall a definite resolution. If we compiled a list
of the URLs or subscription e-mail addresses of C/GCC lists and resources,
and in the future the self-appointed regulars politely steered general
questions toward them, that could be a reasonable way to deal with the

http://www.avrfreaks.net is a good place for general questions about AVR tools and projects in general.

I do not believe there is a problem, anyone who has an opinion on this matter is invited to email me privately so I may gauge the general feeling.

Yes an avr-gcc FAQ would be a good thing. Snippets here and there already exist, as does an archive of this list, but someone needs to take ownership of such a project in order to achieve something useful.

(If anyone thinks I'm out of line, has a different proposal, or disagrees
that this is a problem at all, please let me know. Again, my intent is not
to flame or to call out specific questions; it's just a general request to
narrow the scope of discussion to the stated purpose of the list.)

The thought of creating a general avr discussion list has crossed my mind a few times lately, many find the forum style of discussion group less convenient than a mailing list and hence don't get much out of other existing sites.

Thank you for voicing your opinions, they are welcome. I will send a follow up post if I receive any email on the topic.

Best Regards,

Jason Kyle
avr-gcc-list admin

Mike Tsao

avr-gcc-list at http://avr1.org

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