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21.2.90 pretest, 21.3, 21.4...

From: Juanma Barranquero
Subject: 21.2.90 pretest, 21.3, 21.4...
Date: Mon, 04 Nov 2002 17:16:24 +0100

21.1 was released on 2001-10-20, more than a year ago.

21.2 was released on 2002-03-16, almost eight months ago.

We're just on the second pretest of 21.3. I think it's fair to assume
it'll be still a few months (at least two or three) before 21.3 hits the
streets.  Even if we feature-freeze 21.4-to-be at this moment and start
pretesting it like mad, it'll be almost two years since the last
feature-packed release was introduced to the public.  22.1 with Unicode
will be much further yet along the way.

OK, I know that:
 - we don't *have* to be faster than that
 - we prefer quality releases 
 - people really interested in features vs. stability can access the CVS

Still, I wonder if we should try to pack less punch in each release, and
release a bit faster than we're doing today.  I fear that this (totally
apparent, but public perception counts) stagnation can lead people to
other editors, or (worse, although more improbably) more Emacs branching.

Also, it's tough trying to evangelize people when I know that some
much-appreciated features are just in the HEAD and won't see the light
in a year or two...

Of course, I don't know what we should do, other than attracting more
people to Emacs development. Perhaps a tentative schedule like the one
in GCC would be a first step, but I'm not sure.

Or perhaps the problem is only on my mind; in that case, sorry for
taking your time.


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