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Subject: Re: [boost] encouraging review managers -- was Re: Review Request: Variadic Macro Data library
From: Gordon Woodhull (gordon_at_[hidden])
Date: 2011-02-19 17:42:19

On Feb 19, 2011, at 4:46 PM, Edward Diener wrote:
>> the review "queue" ... doesn't exist and isn't the right idea.
> It does not exist as far as that anybody can see it but maybe it does exist otherwise. But I think it is the right idea in that there should be some people who are accepted as possible reviewers who can be contacted if no one else volunteers to review a particular library. I see nothing wrong with that situation.

AFAIK the review wizards are not doing this. I don't think they should be expected to because it's hard to know who's qualified to manage a particular review. It takes domain knowledge.

Sure it would be nice if it worked.

>> I don't think it makes sense for the Review Wizards to try to assign review managers to libraries - it's much better for people to volunteer based on their own interests and expertise. That is what is happening in practice.
> I agree on principle but if no one volunteers then certainly a library in the review queue should not be rejected simple for lack of a review manager.

Certainly not. I am fine with libraries remaining in the "queue" as long as the author still wants the library considered for Boost.

The only sort of deadline that makes sense in a volunteer organization is if someone loses patience and volunteers to take over from someone else (maintenance, review management...)

>> Ed, you volunteered to be a review manager about a month ago. Have you approached any of the authors of prospective libraries on
>> who are listed as needing review managers?
> I was told to contact the review wizards and offer up my services to review libraries. I did so, and mentioned the libraries I felt I could review. As I understand it, it was then up to the review wizards to determine whether I was qualified to review a library and to contact me about doing so if they thought that I was. I was not subsequently contacted.

Again, this is what it says on the Process page but I don't think it actually happens. I'd like the Review Wizards to correct me if I'm wrong.

As for determining whether a prospective manager is qualified, doesn't that require infinite wisdom? Isn't it undecidable, like the halting problem? I think someone could prove oneself incompetent, but the only way to prove competence is to do it.

> What do you mean "approached any of the authors of prospective libraries" ? I initially offered to review a number of libraries but was told to do what I described in the preceding paragraph.

Oh, I didn't notice that you had specifically chosen some libraries - that's good. I think you should volunteer directly to the authors. This seems to be what works in practice. Again, if the Wizards could be expected to do this, it would be easier, but I don't see how this could be expected to work in general.

I'm trying to provoke some debate here, and hopefully to get the process amended. Maybe I will start a new thread if this fails to get notice. (Ed, sorry for hijacking your thread - I just happened to notice that you were having difficulty both volunteering as RM and in finding an RM.)


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