HYM – Help you to merge

The idea is provide new (incoming) developers with a grafic tool that should be helpful during the merge operation.

I called it HYM (but suggestions are welcome!) and got a first approach using balsamiq. I would like to proceed following these steps:

  1. Show mockup and get feedbacks (in particular I would know if there were actions to remove/add/change at gui that developers usally do during merge)
  2. Apply feedbacks and create project in LP (with the maintainers group, all architects are welcome)
  3. Start modelling application using UML (specify, construct and document the artifacts)
  4. Call for feedbacks again about structure and choose which technologies will be used to deploy/develop application.
  5. Start development.

I don’t know if a tool like this one could be helpful to improve the development of Ubuntu. Considering I would like to know your thoughts about, I’m going to show you the mockup (step 1). Click on the image below (direct link) and please leave a feedback/suggestion:

Note that image could change in the next days.


7 thoughts on “HYM – Help you to merge

  1. OdyX

    In my Very humble and biased opinion, I think this tool takes the problem from the wrong end.
    This eventual tool solves the “how to make merges easier?” question, where I think the question should be “why is there a need for merges in the first place?”. The answer to this question is sometimes
    a) “because people from Ubuntu haven’t taken time to contact the original Debian maintainers to talk about the differences and reduce them to minimal”
    b) “because Debian is frozen and we need those changes anyway”
    c) …

    In my recent experiences in the collaboration between Ubuntu and Debian on specific problems, we could always find ways to avoid the need of merges for Ubuntu. This has happenned by using git branches, by making smart use of the dpkg-vendor tool, etc. Then merges are not necessary anymore.

    Again, IMHO, work should be done to increase collaboration between _people_ on a single repository instead of building _tools_ to ease forking (which this tool looks like).

    1. l3on Post author

      Hi OdyX…

      Your words are very interesting. It seems your point of view is “an app like this one is useless”. I think that untill Debian and Ubuntu still remain different distros, there will be a lot of packages to merge (I’m not a “fulltime” developer, so I could miss a lot of things).
      To increase communication between developers we can add a new feature at the application, usefull to open a new bug in Debian in order to report changes to original maintainer.

      What do you think about?

      1. OdyX

        l3on: your intention is noble, but I can’t agree with you. What Ubuntu needs is not more merges, but less, because that means less work. Less merges means that the pertinent Ubuntu changes have been merged to Debian (and eventually upstream) and benefit a wider part of the free software community.

        So no, I don’t think this application is needed and I tend to think it will do more harm than good to the Debian-Ubuntu relationship.

  2. l3on Post author

    Hi Jono!

    Thank you for the suggestion! I’ll read it asap. Yesterday I talked with Daniel Holbach, he invited me to contact MOTUs and get more feedbacks about. I hope you’ll join the discussion in ML (I’ll open it in the next days).



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