[Sugar-devel] cookie licker

Kevin Mark kevin.mark at verizon.net
Thu Jun 2 01:46:48 EDT 2011

On Wed, Jun 01, 2011 at 12:13:33PM -0400, David Farning wrote:
> Brilliant anti-pattern :)
> Cookie licker - Picture a child who has had enough cookies, but wants to save
> the last one for later. So they take it off the plate and lick it, to ensure
> no-one else will eat it. The same phenomenon exists for community projects -
> prominent community members reserve key features on the roadmap for themselves,
> potentially depriving others of good opportunities to contribute. Beware of
> over-committing, and leave space for community contributions in project
> roadmaps. Be clear on what you will and will not do. [1]
> How many of us have given into the temptation of licking a cookie or two :(

This is something that does happen in free software world. When someone in
Debian 'takeover' a package, its sort-of like it creates an invisible wall
saying 'this is mine, dont touch'. At the same time, this person should be open
to others contribution. In Debian, if someone notices an unmaintained project,
they can go through a procedure to ask for the ownership to be transfered to
them. They would first email the maintainer, and if after a bit of time, no
reply is found, they would voice this issue on a development list and say 'I'm
taking this, is that ok?'. With the extreme case, asking for mediation would be
required. Also Debian asks folks to create teams to maintain packages. This is
not always a solution, because you might assume that someone else in the team
is working on X and it doesn't get done. Learning to say 'I'm going to be busy
for X months, will someone take my package' is proper etiquette.

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