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Subject: Re: [boost] [test] boost.test owner unresponsive to persistent problems for multiple years
From: Robert Ramey (ramey_at_[hidden])
Date: 2015-01-08 12:41:55

Stephen Kelly-2 wrote
> Paul A. Bristow wrote:
>> a situation where a lone worker was solely controlling a key library
>> used by almost all others.
> Isn't that exactly how boost is designed to work?

I'm not sure how was boost was designed - or evolved ( I suppose it depends
upon one's religion). But I think that a major contributor to Boost's
success is the fact that the boost "organization" (that's us) doesn't really
design or take responsibility for doing anything but rather passes judgement
on things that are proposed to it. The puts the onus on individuals to
craft something that meets some sort of standards. Due to the features of
human nature, ego, etc. .... these library are very much an individual
effort - which is a good thing. It promotes conceptual integrity and makes
for smaller, decoupled libraries. One thing we do is that once a library is
accepted, it shuts the door to anyone proposing alternatives. I see the
value in this, but it limits us also. Would it be a problem if someone were
to submit an alternative serialization library for example. Certainly
someone likes the library interface but might prefer one which is more C++17
friendly and header only. Is there any reason we couldn't have both - as
long as they meet boost standards? (which I would like to see higher than
they are). If we had statistics on library usage, we could drop accepted
libraries from the "standard" distribution when they fall out of favor.

I love the way boosts drives C++ forward by accepting things which no
committee would ever design - like boost / spirit, asio, and other stuff.
But the dynamism is only working for the intake of libraries.

In my world, anyone dissatisfied with some aspects of the Boost Test could
make boost test2 (or boost validate or whatever) which, if accepted, would
be an competitor. If, over time, one fell in to wide disuse (lol - I
couldn't think of a better way to say it), it would remain a boost library
with it's imprimatur of excellence, but wouldn't be included in the default
boost distribution. I would be effectively be supported - though in effect
be deprecated. Of course if the author got on the stick and his library
became popular again, the decision could be easily reversed.

Robert Ramey

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