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Re: Self-introduction

From: Larry McVoy <lm_at_bitmover.com>
Date: 2001-02-26 21:08:20 CET

> I've signed up because I want to help head BitKeeper off at the pass.

We're flattered you think it is worth your time. With such a luminary
against us, how can we possibly succeed? Maybe we ought to drop our
"insidious" source license and make it a binary only product. I'm sure
that slashdot would love to hear that ESR has stamped out another bad
license and the only cost was that you can't get source anymore.

> So my goal is to find out where you guys are, and if I judge that you
> look like the best bet to funnel some people and resources your way.
> I may contribute a few ideas (I gave McVoy the idea for the changeset
> abstraction in BitKeeper back in 1998) but probably not heavy coding;

Eric, let's set the record straight on this one. First of all, you
can't possibly be claiming you invented the changeset abstraction, right?
See below before you consider doing so. Second of all, as to you giving
me ideas, have you ever considered that perhaps the policy of giving
others credit even when they don't deserve it is a better thing than
taking credit when you don't deserve it? That's what was happening,
I was being nice and you turn it into you invented the idea. Sheesh.

Perhaps you are unaware of this, but 7 years before we talked, I had
*finished* writing my first source management system, something which
Sun still ships today, generates 10s of millions of dollars a year, has
been used for Solaris development for 10+ years, etc. It may come as
a shock to you, but I'm well versed in the area, in fact, better versed
in theory and in practice than you are. I'll happily stack my code
against yours, my knowledge against yours, I love the idea of a panel
question and answer session with you and me on the panel. I think it
would be a hoot and quite the crowd pleaser. Let's do it.

I'm well aware of the conversations we've had on the topic, and I can
assure you that you added little, if anything at all, to the effort.
I let you believe that you did more than you did simply to stroke your
ego in hopes of you fixing up that mess you call VC mode so that it would
work with BK. That's all I wanted and it still isn't done, and we're
writing code to work around how badly VC mode is written. I was wrong
on two counts: stroking your ego and believing you'd ever fix that code.
I guess I could have predicted the latter, but it was stupid of me to
do the former. Who would have thought you'd take a few nice comments
and try and turn them into you doing things you didn't do? Still,
I should have known better. I won't do it again, at least not with you.

For those who wish to live a little closer to reality , it may be
interesting to note that the changeset abstraction Eric claims he
invented or passed on to me, has been around for at least 12 years,
Aide de Camp is a cset based system which first shipped around '88.
There were conferences 5 years ago where all papers were comparing
"change sets" vs. "change packages", perhaps Eric should contact those
people and let them know that he invented the abstraction, they will
surely print retractions. I've read some of those papers long before
Eric and I ever met, BTW. Here's a good one:


And the basic concepts on which a changeset is built, what is commonly
called a changeset engine, are present in SCCS, in CDC Update, etc.
These go back around 30 years. One of the guys who works here patented
some stuff based on changeset ideas in '96. I was writing Sun's Teamware
system in '91, are you going to claim credit for that as well? Come on,
Eric, we all know you are smart guy and all, there is no need to claim
credit for things you didn't do. heck, I can't open a traderag without
hearing about the "substantial contributions" you have made to the Open
Source world. Isn't that enough for you?

As much as you seem like you would like to help us with your great
ideas, maybe you could consider sticking with the areas where you excel,
such as fetchmail, rather than trying to help us. We're doing fine.

We'd be happy to see you working with Subversion, you are a sharp
guy and I'm sure the Subversion people will welcome your assistance.

Larry McVoy            	 lm at bitmover.com           http://www.bitmover.com/lm
Received on Sat Oct 21 14:36:23 2006

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