RFC: Properly stated origin of code contributions

Mikolaj Konarski mikolaj at well-typed.com
Fri Oct 31 11:54:11 UTC 2014

> The current situation is suboptimal, as it's unclear where the threshold
> for adding yourself as an author to a module header is
> (whitespace/indentation cleanups, fixing/writing docs, removing lines,
> adding a 5-line function in a 500 line module, ...?), and it's a bit
> unfair to those that have contributed far more to a module but haven't
> bothered to add themselves to the module header.

For these reasons, and due to the power of git and Phab, I think,
author annotations in module headers do not fulfill their original
purpose particularly well any more. Neither the purpose of stating who
is responsible/interested in a code fragment, nor the purpose
of giving people credit. Could we get rid of them? The annotations
already in the code would stay in git history and any future authors
are recorded in git and Phab messages. We just need to make sure
to mention original authors in git commit messages, if for whatever
reason the original commit creator git metadata would be lost
(or manually revert the loss of info via git options).

BTW, this relates to the pseudonymous contributions discussion.
The git/Phab history only helps to the extent that people identify
themselves. One less place with one less version of contributor
names/pseudonyms should actually help accounting for all
contributors on the wiki, in .cabal, etc., for the purpose of giving
public credit, for legal reasons, etc.


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