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From Marvin Humphrey <>
Subject Re: What is "The Apache Way"?
Date Sat, 10 Jan 2015 20:04:16 GMT
On Fri, Jan 9, 2015 at 12:01 PM, Rich Bowen <> wrote:

> On 01/09/2015 02:03 PM, Jim Jagielski wrote:
>> Another way to look at the Apache Way is as a musical composition.
>> Sure, it was written for a specific arrangement, but sometimes
>> it's played as a jazz piece, other-times as a classical, or maybe
>> with a blues flavor. But it is always (or*should be*) recognizable.
>> If you*don't*  recognize it, then you've taken the "interpretation"
>> too far, if you get my meaning.
> What a delightful analogy.
> Of course, you're always going to get people who say that a disco
> rendition is fine, and others who say it's blasphemous.

>From my perspective, that explanation of The Apache Way was fine, but
completely unhelpful.

Similarly, a "signpost" document collecting links is no more useful in
establishing the boundaries of Apache's project requirements than
countless other incomplete, unofficial resources.

The willingness of a Board member or other authority to provide answers
to specific questions is marginally helpful -- until contradictory
answers are provided by a competing authority.

Somewhere out there in the vast wasteland of Apache's websites and
mailing list archives, there exist requirements that Apache projects
*must* fulfill or face sanction by the Board.  Theoretically there are
not many absolute requirements, but learning all of them is literally
impossible: there is no authoritative document setting limits on what
Apache expects of its projects.

Determining what you can get away with at Apache entails digging through
huge scrap heaps of documentation and picking the brains of various
unreliable oracles.  It's maddeningly laborious and slow, and ultimately
you can never have much confidence in the answers you unearth.

I don't place much value on giving the Board so much flexibility.  My
sympathies lie with the poor slobs trying to figure out where Apache's
rules begin and end -- and with those who build strong communities
according to their own good faith interpretation of The Apache Way, only
to face censure because their interpretation turned out to be "wrong".

Maintaining the Board's flexibility to pass judgment while denying those
it oversees the rule of law is a poor tradeoff.  It is incredibly
inefficient, and it makes the Incubator's mission untenable.  Even if
the Board makes good calls every once in a while, the rest of us should
not have to live in perpetual uncertainty.

Marvin Humphrey

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