Friday, March 25, 2005

The Round Table

A group of us went to dinner at Logan Tavern last night. Guido van Rossum, David Ascher, Jeremy Hylton, Will Robinson, Chris DiBona, Barry Warsaw, Matt Blecker, and myself. We sat at a big round table which normally helps for discussion in a group, but the noise level was pretty high.

The conversation was quite interesting. It started with a query about whether a well-known Python app should be hosted by the Apache Software Foundation (ASF) or the Python Software Foundation (PSF). On one hand, the ASF is better structured and ready to accept new hunks of software. It has guidelines, procedures, and all the various "stuff" to process incoming software and to get the associated development group integrated with the rest of the ASF. It also provides version control and distribution points and all the other bits for running a project. The PSF doesn't have any of this. It only manages Python, and it does that on SourceForge rather than a PSF infrastructure. So what to do with the Python app?

Moving into a PSF project would be sort of a forcing function. It would lay the path for other projects to follow. That could be very good for the PSF.

But the discussion at the table then became, "but should the PSF do that? What should the PSF be? Why is that important?" It was a lot of fun to watch David and Guido go back and forth on the issue. Guido really doesn't care much for doing a lot of PSF stuff -- he just wants to work on the Python language. David wants to see the PSF role and visibility increased (so do I, fwiw).

It's an interesting question for the PSF Members to talk about. We didn't decide where to put the app (ASF or PSF), but I don't think that is something that needs to be solved right away.

Dinner was quite good, btw, even though the guy next to me was literally half my age ;-)

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