Usefulness of Subject-header of git commit mails

Eike Hein hein at
Sun Jan 23 22:58:41 GMT 2011

On 1/23/2011 11:32 PM, Milian Wolff wrote:
> I really hate that noone told me this before. I was not kidding when I said
> what you quoted above. Noone gave me *any* arguments in favor of the old
> format, except "it was like that in SVN times". Hence this whole thread
> (which, btw, I started since your colleagues told me so).

Right, sorry - seems there probably was a bit of Chinese whispers
going on where who you had talked to wasn't actually in the room
when the kdepim and KOffice folks (I believe it was) requested the
common root and it got turned into "like it was back in SVN" for
reference when moving into the implementation phase.

Rest assured that the real goal is to have a useful mail subject
for today's needs, whatever they may be, and not to stick to any
particular convention for convention's sake.

>> I don't know whether you actually lacked the imagination to
>> consider this need or chose to purposely ignore this possibi-
>> lity in order to be able to focus better on saying "useless"
>> as many times as you felt necessary to get your pet format
>> reinstated, but man, your style sure feels like the latter.
> Yes, apparently I do lack the imagination. And it does feel useless (to say it
> once more), for all projects I work on. With Boudewijn's email I finally
> understood that this might indeed be useful for some people in some repos.

First up I want to apologize a bit for the lingo in my para up
there, that was a bit too sharp.

Thing is that we get competing requests sometimes that we need
to weigh against each other, and that's not always easy because
as you can see here there are legitimate needs both ways (since
I actually agree with you on the issue - the commit subject is
more useful to me than the common root in the repositories I
most often work in, too).

In the end, this is some form of growing pains - in the context
of the larger task of rewriting the hooks to get the bug count
down the specifics of the mail subject are only a small aspect
of what we had to do, and we weren't prepared to see such an
aggressive reaction to something that just feels like it needs
a bit more tuning to hopefully get right for everyone.

At the same time I understand that the mail subject change was
probably the most immediately visible consequence of the rollout
of the rewritten hooks and that viewed by itself it may have been
an upsetting and arbitrary-seeming change.

Best regards,
Eike Hein

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