[isabelle-dev] Bug Tracking

Makarius makarius at sketis.net
Thu Jul 9 19:39:19 CEST 2009

On Thu, 9 Jul 2009, Brian Huffman wrote:

> I think it's time to bring up the issue of bug tracking again. I just 
> replied to Peter Lammich on the Isabelle users list about a bug in the 
> locale package that has been known to exist for at least a year and a 
> half; it is unclear whether anyone has taken any responsibility for 
> fixing the bug, or indeed whether there is any plan to fix it at all. A 
> bug tracking system would have been very useful in this case.

When this question came up many many years ago, we were a bit reluctant to 
manage yet another system (the tracker), so started with an immediate 
low-tech solution: a plain file Admin/BUGS.  Larry was the first who 
entered something, I was second and third, afterwards that file was never 
maintained by anybody, so I removed it (after resolving the remaining 

Note that this is a bit similar to NEWS and CONTRIBUTORS which are ignored 
by most contributors.  The big difference is that I usually take the pain 
to remind people of it, but only with half success: there have been many 
changes since Isabelle2009 but few are documented in NEWS.

Anyway, "BUGS" is a very misleading name for unclarities in the system, 
which are quite often merely a misunderstanding how things could work, 
should work, or might work eventually.  Some more knowlegeable people 
would track "ISSUES", not "BUGS" nor "FEATURES".

One also needs extreme care when "fixing" problems: unless this is done by 
someone with a deep understanding of the component in question (usually 
the original author or main maintainer), it is usually introducing more 
problems than are resolved.


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