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SubjectRe: [ATTEND] How to act on LKML
On Tue, 16 Jul 2013, Steven Rostedt wrote:
> On Tue, 2013-07-16 at 16:49 +0100, Stefano Stabellini wrote:
> > I have been hacking in several different Open Source communities during
> > the last few years, including qemu-devel, xen-devel, linux-arm and the
> > lkml of course.
> >
> > The etiquette on the lkml is by far the roughest of them all. It's the
> It's also the largest of them all.
> > "bad neighborhood with guns" of the Open Source world. You never know
> > when you are going to get a bullet, but sooner or later you'll get one.
> It just seems that way as it is so large. LKML has the most people and
> will also have the biggest conflict in personalities. It just goes with
> the territory.

Even though the LKML is probably the largest Open Source community,
there are other groups out there of similar size.
I don't believe that in order to scale up we need to be like this.

> > I think that it's hurting Linux and in particular it's hurting
> > attracting new talents.
> Then why do we have the largest # of developers than any other Open
> Source project?

Because Linux is the most widely used kernel, it's everywhere from
embedded devices to supercomputers.
Many different companies make a business on Linux and pay people to work
on it (not FreeBSD or NetBSD). But that's different from what I was
saying below. Also not all the sub-groups within the kernel development
circles work this way.

Or maybe there are just enough brilliant kernel developers that don't

> > Not just devs for hire but people passionate
> > about what they do and eager to become more involved in the project.
> > I met more than one good ex-Linux hacker that decided to move to do
> > other things because of this.
> Honestly, I think LKML over the years has become more tame. Yeah, back
> in 2005 it was rather harsh, but I don't really see that anymore. I
> don't see the nasty flame wars going on. Everything seems to be focused
> more on the technical side, and there's really very little personal
> attacks out there. Sure, with 15,000 emails a month, you get a few. And
> Linus will get fed up and burst. But they are really few and far
> between. And sometimes, a Linus burst gets things moving along much
> faster than being "professional". You think ARM would have gotten their
> act together as quick as they did if Linus didn't curse them out and
> threaten to stop pulling their crap?

I think there is a way to get the point across without cursing.
One can be clear and decisive without "bursting". It's easy to mistake
cursing on the quality of the code for a personal attack.

When HPA wrote "I find it utterly impossible to be offended by it", that
might be true for Linus' rants and I also find them humorous sometimes.
But unfortunately this kind of behavior is by no means limited to Linus
and it's easy to misunderstand, especially when you don't know the

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