Posted by: Jeff Luther
I have been reading this thread about open source of the TD product, and
feel this so-called 'great idea' needs to be put into some perspective:
I am surprised at how folks seem to forget all the problems that others
have had *programming* in TD! Witness ALL the messages from so many over
the years who are trying to deal with the basics of UI, connectivity,
the backend, table windows, OOP and classes, scoping, COM, the Windows
API and so many other issues.
Folks, TD is NOT, repeat NOT -- unlike JG's analogy below -- an end-user
product like Netscape, FireFox et al. TD is a *programming* product. And
to think that anyone who may already be struggling with learning and
using that product -- or thinks that s/he really already knows TD and
has become an 'expert' -- is now going to be able to dive into the TD
source, modify it and try to use that for their own programming needs
(as well as pass along to others) makes me shudder!
Imagine the NG traffic then!! You can't mandate who gets to 'play' with
an open source product, so how can we possibly keep an open-source TD
in the hands of the real experts only? (Or decide what's a good fix
from a bad one?) And for every expert using TD I might estimate 20? 100?
people who have more than enough on their plates in trying to learn
and use the TD product as it is.
Our true experts now on the NG already have their hands full trying
to keep up with and respond to the "Help!" msg. traffic here. Can you
imagine the additional wave of HELP! msgs. after mods. to the TD source?
Hey, TD has been in the hands of expert programmers over the years
(and I mean that sincerely - I've known and worked with some of them).
And if they still have a list of bugs to fix, are forced to withdraw
a version -- or crank out a PTF because of problems -- how on earth
can anyone expect that we 'masses' will do any better? (And maybe do
a whole lot worse.)
Of course, there are legitimate experts here who visit the Gupta NG and
who likely do have the skill set to make useful contributions to the
source. But beyond that rare hand-full, how does anyone expect to limit
those diving into the TD source to those few only? And what happens to
the rest of us when they do dive in?
It's a little like making wine: you take a taste of something, feel you
are an expert, and think: "Gee, I can do better than that!" Now... let
me put you in the role of having to put a good and consistent wine
together -- a vineyard, a solid grape varietal, workers during harvest,
a cellar, new glass and corks, an efficient bottling line, a PhD. in
vinology who has to 'balance' the grape juice s/he has with that
'taste' everyone wants -- and I will show you that "I can do better
than that" is a WHOLE LOT TOUGHER than it looks!
My 2 cents, as always, and likely to get some responses (a fire storm?)
to my response, but I think a view from that 'other side' needs to be
stated here. Again, just to keep things in perspective.
Jeff @ PC Design