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Re: Changes I've been thinking of...

From: Richard Stonehouse
Subject: Re: Changes I've been thinking of...
Date: Thu, 08 Oct 2009 11:33:03 +0100
User-agent: Opera Mail/9.64 (Win32)

On Thu, 08 Oct 2009 00:34:39 +0200, Riccardo Mottola <address@hidden> wrote:

For example the download page is something people expect, yet it is
confused. We have mirrors, do we still have them?

I am the perpetrator of the (rather horrible!) PHP hack used in this page.

The mirrors were always a bit problematic - even then, some of the alleged mirrors didn't work, and those that did often didn't get updated with the latest changes until long after they had happened. The mirrors were important because, at that time, the GNUstep site had very limited bandwidth and people were encouraged to use mirrors instead. I think this problem is historical.

If, then I'd expect something like:

<package 1> [download version 1 main site]
[download version 1 mirror 1]
[download version 1 mirror 2]

<package 2> [download version 2 main site]
[download version 2 mirror 1]
[download version 2 mirror 2]

The idea behind the way it is done is that the user can select their preferred mirror initially and it is then used for all their downloads from that page. I think that offering a per-package choice of mirror would be (slightly) more confusing for the user - having to think about 'what packages do I want?' and 'where can I get them from?' at the same time - and would clutter the information on the page. However the best solution might well be simply to drop the mirrors.

On the general questions, some feedback from a few years ago when I advertised a set of GNUstep packages on the SuSE newsgroup:

  - the NeXT 'look and feel' was of interest to at
    least some people;

  - there were complaints about the 'old-fashioned'
    default appearance of GNUstep and the (then) lack
    of ability to customise it;

  - there were complaints about the apparent lack of
    integration between GNUstep and the WindowMaker
    window manager.

Richard Stonehouse

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