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Re: [Savannah-hackers-public] Prospective Savannah Hacker Evaluation: Ta

From: Assaf Gordon
Subject: Re: [Savannah-hackers-public] Prospective Savannah Hacker Evaluation: Task 13585 (Stive)
Date: Sun, 30 Aug 2015 22:53:35 -0400
User-agent: Mozilla/5.0 (X11; Linux x86_64; rv:38.0) Gecko/20100101 Thunderbird/38.2.0

Hello Bruno,

Thank you for offering help, and following up on it! much appreciated.
I also apologize for the delayed response (another indication that more 
volunteers are always needed).

Regarding your evaluation, few comments (out-or-order):

On 08/24/2015 05:01 PM, Bruno Félix Rezende Ribeiro wrote:

We strongly encourage that you make the following changes to your

   * Put the copyright and license notices --- in the form of a source
     code comments --- in the Stive's script very top, as explained at

That is correct - but it's not a "strong encouragement" - it is a requirement:
All files must have clear copyright statement and license notice.
Stated here:
and expanded here: .

There are some edge-cases (extremely small files of less than 10 lines),
and files of a format that can not embed metadata such as license -
but in these cases - it is required that a different file (e.g. a README)
explicitly mentions the copyright and licensing information.

The following are important and relevant points:
[...] You didn't provide the program's dependency list.
[...] Include a copy of the GPLv3+ license [...]

The rest of comments, while solid and reasonable, are not requirements
and thus are not part of the evaluation:

* Distribute the program in form of a tarball with a single [...]
* In the '--copyright' option text point users to  [...]
* Make Stive fail graciously when lynx is not found.  Currently  [...]
* Implement the GNU standards' command-line interface as in  [...]
* Merge the text of '--copyright' option with the one of '--version'  [...]
* Make program's output wrap around 80 columns to ease reading.  [...]
* The package's homepage url:  [...]
* Are you sure you have a meaningful use for a version string of  [...]

When I recently joined the savannah team, I was also surprised to discover that 
the quality of the program
or its adherence to GNU's coding standard are *not relevant at all* for project 
evaluation of 'non-gnu' projects.
The only thing that matters for a non-gnu project to be hosted on GNU savannah 
is whether it complies with the hosting requirement policies (and similarly, 
the only thing that matters for a GNU project is to be accepted as a GNU 
package by RMS or the GNU evaluation team - and that's not our mandate here).

To take it to the extreme: Even for the worse-written source code that doesn't 
even compile - if it complies with the hosting requirement and policies - it 
should be accepted, and there's no need to comment to the author about the 
quality or style of the code.

I'll refer you to my (somewhat surprised) questions, and to Karl Berry's 
insightful answers in this discussion:
The entire thread is worth reading (in fact, all of Karl's posts in August 2014 
are very helpful in this context since they cover much of the rules regarding 
savannah policies: ).


Helping with more evaluation: please do help, that is very much appreciate!.
Continue with 'stive', and we'll send the evaluation when you have it.

To help with more projects, subscribe to this mailing list:
and you'll be notified whenever a new project is submitted (seems like an 
average of 1/day, sometimes more, sometimes less).
Review it, and send your evaluations to address@hidden
(I'll try to reply fast, but please allow few days).

To get a 'feel' of what we're doing, examine past evaluations:
And many others on the mailing list:

You'll notice that most of the time, the comments follow certain "themes" and 
mostly similar wordings.
(I'll admit I wasn't as clear and consistent initially, but I hope I improved 
over time :) ).


Expanding on this tedious and manual project evaluation,
My dream is to automate as many parts of it as possible.
Not just for savannah volunteers, but also for users: if the evaluation is 
automatic, they could run it locally on their projects before submitting the 
project - everybody wins.

Towards that, I'm working on a side-project and I'll be happy for any help:
more details here:

If you're interested in helping this project - that would be terrific.
Write to me and we'll discuss further.


Hope these are good pointers.
For other possibilities, see .

 - assaf

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