Darcs supports pre-checkin hooks was Re: Controlled anarchy

Sven Panne Sven.Panne at aedion.de
Sun Oct 23 08:09:51 EDT 2005

Am Freitag, 21. Oktober 2005 22:54 schrieb Shae Matijs Erisson:
> Jacques Carette <carette at mcmaster.ca> writes:
> > I would strongly recommend against 'allow everyone to just commit'
> > without the presence of a large automated test suite which is used to
> > (automatically) reject code that breaks a test.
> Darcs supports 'run test before checkin' and if we had darcs, people would
> contribute tests too.

Well, I appreciate everybody's enthusiasm for darcs, but the statement above 
is highly misleading and *not* a valid reason at all to change to darcs: We 
could easily have this CVS already (and of course with Subversion etc.), see:


Our main problem here is not technical, it is simply a lack of a decent test 
suite for all the library packages in the repository. And I totally agree 
with Jacques here: As long as we don't have this test suite, I'll furiously 
object to 'allow everyone to just commit'. This will simply not work and will 
actually turn away much more people from Haskell due to the resulting 
instability and API volatility than attract people to our beloved language.

I see a dire need for more Haskell *maintainers*, not for more developers or 
brand new shiny version control systems. With "maintainers" I mean people 
accepting/testing/merging patches, discussing with people about APIs, kicking 
coders to write tests for their code, collecting opinions and writing down 
API proposals, keeping existing APIs stable/sane/usable, etc. This is a lot 
of work, it's difficult, time-consuming and much less fun than coding, but we 
need those people. Darcs won't help with this at all...

Don't get me wrong: I think that darcs is a great tool and did a lot to 
improve Haskell's visibility and acceptance, but it is not a solution for the 
problems we have. People have always a tendency to propose technical 
solutions for non-technical problems, this is exactly what I'm observing 
currently on this list...


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