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Re: [Libcdio-devel] [RFC] New API iso9660_statv2_t as API/ABI compatible

From: Pete Batard
Subject: Re: [Libcdio-devel] [RFC] New API iso9660_statv2_t as API/ABI compatible way to read files >= 4 GiB
Date: Sun, 8 Jul 2018 22:29:44 +0100
User-agent: Mozilla/5.0 (Windows NT 10.0; WOW64; rv:52.0) Gecko/20100101 Thunderbird/52.9.0

On 2018.07.08 21:30, Thomas Schmitt wrote:
What if an application is poorly maintained but still in use.

Well, from seeing the real-life damage this kind of reasoning actually incurs, I'm not going to mince my words: For the benefit of end users, and no matter how popular they are, applications that are not being maintained _must_ be weeded out. And the sooner the better. If that can be hastened as a side effect of ABI breakage, all the better. ;)

Now, because I fear that some people might be taken aback by the argument I am making, and may even be tempted to compare it to some kind of eugenics nonsense, please remember that all we are talking about here are things, not individuals, and things that are past due their usefulness do get discarded all the time, for very sensible reasons. There is a best before date on food, to avoid rot - why should it not be the same on software (to avoid bit-rot)? ;) But of course, because we're talking software, this "best before date" must be flexible and depend entirely on the maintenance effort put in by its developer.

We're long past the days of "I'll put an application out there and stop maintaining it" as a viable software development approach, which too many proprietary software vendors (as well as some Open Source ones) seem to have. From my own experience, development of an application is only 20% of the work. Maintenance is the rest. If you are not prepared to put in the 80%, then, on behalf of all the users who are going to be very negatively affected by this decision _not_ to want to maintain code in the long run, I can only wish that some form of breakage will occur that will make these same users realize, sooner rather than later, that they should switch to using a well maintained alternative instead.

This is another case where, IMO, the long term benefits for end users greatly outweigh any temporary inconvenience.

Plus, it's another good way to push for the end of all proprietary software, which, as a long term FSF contributor, is something I am also personally very keen on...

So there you have it. You see a problem, whereas I see yet another great opportunity to make the (software) world better for end users ;)



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