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From Stefano Mazzocchi <>
Subject Re: Time to rethink incubation?
Date Sun, 21 Sep 2003 14:08:54 GMT

On Friday, Sep 19, 2003, at 15:34 Europe/Rome, Rodent of Unusual Size 

> Stefano Mazzocchi wrote:
>> I still believe that the Incubation PMC doesn't make any sense at all.
> oh, please, let's not start another flamewar about whether it's
> needed or not.  it's here; can we please just deal with it and make it
> work as well as possible?

Between flamewar comments and yawning, I think I just failed to get my 
point across, which is unfortunate, because last thing I want is to 
waste time, mine and yours.

I apologize for the tone of my previous email. I was kinda nervous for 
the things that happened over at Lenya (of which, the incubator is 
*NOT* responsible) and I let those negative emotions into my comments, 
leading to bad impression and ruining the concept.

Let me try again.

                                 - o -

First of all, the ASF needs a way to grow. Growing pressure exists now 
and will exist in the future.

Telling people "go to sourceforge and come back when you are ready" 
works, but it's suboptimal: many projects might die in the process. And 
this makes the ASF look bad.

Allow me to draw a parallel with biological evolution: the above "go to 
sourceforge" is similar to laying eggs and go away, while incubation is 
a 'parenting' process.

Following the parallel, while non-mammals (ovipars? sorry my english 
vocabulary gets poorer approaching zoology) have a very low 
success/failure rate (where success is "ability to reproduce before 
dying" and failure is "death before having been able to reproduce"), 
mammals tend to much higher success/failure rate over their children.

Note that 'parenting' has a significant importance not only in 
protecting children while growing, but also in 'teaching' them facts 
and values, not only related to their surviving, but also to their 
social environment.

                                  - o -

Now, continuing with the parallel, the animal kingdom shows two forms 
of parenting: family-based and group-based.

The current Incubator PMC acts as a group-based co-parenting process.

I dislike this because it is hard to understand who gets the role, the 
blame, and the responsability. And, as Jim put it, everyone might think 
that somebody else is doing the oversight. Which might result in the 
kid growing down the street on his own.

I would like the ASF to follow a more family-like approach to 
incubation, where the role and responsibility is clear and well defined.

I have my own view on how this can be achieved, but I'm stopping here 
because I want to hear your feedback on this first.


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