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Re: Comments on the book

From: Ben Collins-Sussman <sussman_at_collab.net>
Date: 2004-05-29 15:30:12 CEST

Gary Feldman wrote:

> But there's no reason for you to even get into this discussion. This is a
> book about subversion, not about version control systems in general. The
> fact that the copy-modify-merge model is popular is all the justification
> you need here. Just don't raise the issue at all.

I respectfully disagree. A vast number of readers have experience with
version control, specifically with systems like Visual Source Safe. For
this audience, copy-modify-merge is a new idea, and it's deliberately
compared to lock-modify-lock because readers *are* familiar with the
latter model already. I can't tell you how many times that section of
the book has been shown to pointy-haired-bosses who freak at the concept
of copy-modify-merge. It's been exceedingly useful. A boss doesn't
want to hear that "copy-modify-merge is popular", they need to be told
why universal lock-modify-lock policies are harmful too.

When the book is updated for 1.1, we can tone it down a bit. Locking
*is* useful for certain situations (such as preventing wasted time
editing unmergeable files), but it should never be the default mode of

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Received on Sat May 29 15:31:23 2004

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