[tahoe-dev] notes about DIR2:CHK deep immutability (maybe Tahoe-LAFS v1.6)

Zooko O'Whielacronx zookog at gmail.com
Fri Oct 23 19:04:14 UTC 2009

Hi James:

I'm mindful of avoiding Project Xanadu's fate -- prolonged ambitious
design, but failure to actually implement and deploy to the benefit of
real users.  Also, I've contributed to a couple of ambitious failures
myself: Mojo Nation and Mnet.

Tahoe-LAFS already has a solid anchor to save it from this fate: it
already has a substantial number of users who complain when it doesn't
do what they expected and who request new features.  They request
short-term, not-too-ambitious features like faster upload and better
charset encoding support.

Also, we're committed to full backwards-compatibility in important
dimensions (data, API, network protocol, cap).

This doesn't mean we're not ambitious.  Just wait til you hear about
my ideas for a global decentralized currency!  :-)

But for now, we appear to be making slow but steady progress on adding
small features like #778 and #607 while maintaining excellent
reliability and code quality.  It remains to be seen whether our
progress will be fast enough, or whether something else will arise to
satisfy people who could have used Tahoe-LAFS.  If that happens, then
I hope Tahoe-LAFS at least leaves a legacy of impressing into people's
minds that provider-independent security is possible.

Project Xanadu was a failure at giving people tools they could use,
but it was a success at spreading valuable ideas that later took root
in projects like Tahoe-LAFS.  I hope we can do at least as good.

By the way, we need help.  Kevan Carstensen's contributions over the
summer were a real boon, and we need more!  If you can read code,
please review patches [1].  If you can write code, please look at
"tickets tagged as 'easy'" [2].  In any case, please use Tahoe-LAFS
and complain about it!  :-)


tickets mentioned in this email:
http://allmydata.org/trac/tahoe/ticket/778 # "shares of happiness" is
the wrong measure; "servers of happiness" is better
http://allmydata.org/trac/tahoe/ticket/607 # DIR2:IMM

[1] http://allmydata.org/trac/tahoe/wiki/PatchReviewProcess
[2] http://allmydata.org/trac/tahoe/query?status=!closed&order=priority&keywords=~easy

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