[openstack-dev] [tc][all] A culture change (nitpicking)

John Dennis jdennis at redhat.com
Thu May 31 20:49:13 UTC 2018

On 05/30/2018 08:23 PM, Jeremy Stanley wrote:
> I think this is orthogonal to the thread. The idea is that we should
> avoid nettling contributors over minor imperfections in their
> submissions (grammatical, spelling or typographical errors in code
> comments and documentation, mild inefficiencies in implementations,
> et cetera). Clearly we shouldn't merge broken features, changes
> which fail tests/linters, and so on. For me the rule of thumb is,
> "will the software be better or worse if this is merged?" It's not
> about perfection or imperfection, it's about incremental
> improvement. If a proposed change is an improvement, that's enough.
> If it's not perfect... well, that's just opportunity for more
> improvement later.

I appreciate the sentiment concerning accepting any improvement yet on 
the other hand waiting for improvements to the patch to occur later is 
folly, it won't happen.

Those of us familiar with working with large bodies of code from 
multiple authors spanning an extended time period will tell you it's 
very confusing when it's obvious most of the code follows certain 
conventions but there are odd exceptions (often without comments). This 
inevitably leads to investing a lot of time trying to understand why the 
exception exists because "clearly it's there for a reason and I'm just 
missing the rationale" At that point the reason for the inconsistency is 

At the end of the day it is more important to keep the code base clean 
and consistent for those that follow than it is to coddle in the near term.

John Dennis

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