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 Forum index » Advanced Topics » Puppy Projects » Next Puppy Development » 4.x » Bugs (4.x dev)
How to define bugs, wishes, missing features, ignorance
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trio


Joined: 21 Dec 2008
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PostPosted: Tue 28 Apr 2009, 05:08    Post subject:  How to define bugs, wishes, missing features, ignorance  

Dear All,

Seeing this sub section, it's full with BUGS reports from Ecomoney...(and some of them already deleted!)..we seriously need a fine definition of BUGS..WISH (personal) ..or simply IGNORANCE....

I admire ecomoney's real life work of refurbishing old computer for donations..but this is too much...

starting from me:

BUGS= malfunctioning of apps/wm/etc or even the apps just don't work totally
MISSING FEATURES= well, it is clear...maybe you know what is missing and want to suggest that it should be included
WISHES= what you actually want differently ..maybe different apps or even different WM
IGNORANCE= just simply you don't know about these things, please just ask...somebody will answer.....

Anybody else? ...this is not to point fingers..but only to get things straight..so it will not be confusing for people or even scaring people away.....

Next, this should be concluded and the conclusion maybe posted as sticky somewhere..(top of bugs section?)..thanks

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Last edited by trio on Wed 29 Apr 2009, 01:57; edited 1 time in total
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WhoDo


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PostPosted: Tue 28 Apr 2009, 05:31    Post subject:  

From Wikipedia on Software bugs:

"A software bug is an error, flaw, mistake, failure, or fault in a computer program that prevents it from behaving as intended (e.g., producing an incorrect or unexpected result). Most bugs arise from mistakes and errors made by people in either a program's source code or its design, and a few are caused by compilers producing incorrect code. A program that contains a large number of bugs, and/or bugs that seriously interfere with its functionality, is said to be buggy. Reports detailing bugs in a program are commonly known as bug reports, fault reports, problem reports, trouble reports, change requests, and so forth." {my emphasis}

By that definition, if it were true that Abiword failed to open docx files that would be a bug in the version of Abiword we use, because there is clear evidence in the supported file types list that it was intended to do so when released. It doesn't fail to open them when that file type is selected from within Abiword, AFAIK.

By that definition, when Abiword fails to open .doc format files which use certain standard fonts, that is a bug in Abiword. That issue is being addressed by the Abiword team and we have a workaround fix.

By that definition the absence of a MIME-type pointing .docx format files to be opened by Abiword in Puppy is a shortcoming in Puppy-4.2.1, but not a bug. It is a feature that has not yet been implemented in Puppy, for whatever reason.

By that definition, switching desktops in JWM and so having Abiword apparently "disappear" when using the mouse wheel is NOT a bug in Abiword, JWM, Puppy or anything else, since that behaviour is exactly as intended.

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DaveS


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PostPosted: Tue 28 Apr 2009, 07:19    Post subject:  

Amen!
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James C


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PostPosted: Tue 28 Apr 2009, 09:38    Post subject:  

Thanks for making this post Trio.

This was the point I tried to make in PG's thread earlier. Actual "bugs" need to be kept separate from other areas of concern in order that the real "bugs" don't get lost somewhere in the middle of a bunch of posts.
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ecomoney


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PostPosted: Wed 29 Apr 2009, 10:05    Post subject:  

@WhoDo

I am glad you are doing your research, It is a good sign for the future. I have a College and University Education in Business Information Systems, as well as many years experience heading up multi-million pound, blue chip projects, as well as Mission critical (Y2K) projects for our Social Services Authority. Puppy Linux is where I enjoy being and where I believe I can make the most difference however. If I send you a copy of my C.V. in .doc format will you be able to open it?

Perhaps then I should take some time to update Wikipedia (for it to is written by its experts for its users), and add my own experience regarding the small part youve quoted, and how it applies in the five years since I started using exclusively open source software.

If a updated package introduced into a "distribution" of applications has a bug then that distribution has a bug too. If a decision is made to include that package, untested, and without any demand for that feature from our real-world users, then it is that decision that caused that bug. That bug is worse if effects one of the core functions of distribution to its users, by far the largest catagory of people using puppy and mentioned in its Mission Statement as the people we are to be "Friendly to".

If a bug is introduced through human error, it is in everybody's best interest if that bug is recognised immedietely, and steps taken to ensure the bug is present for the least amount of time as required to fix it, depending on the seriousness of the bug the distro's users, and the amount of other serious bugs.

To summerise...an erronious decision introduced a bug a core distribution function...which in turn caused a big problem to a lot of people.

One of puppies "features" is that it opens files when clicked on, and the "benefits" of that is users dont have to buy into Microsoft to do it. If a word document (99% of which are made with M$ word) doesnt open when clicked on...puppy does not have that benefit, and users have no alternative to buy into Microsoft/Other OS to get it.

Conclusion.

The top linux "just works" livecd/starter distro should be able to open Word Documents in a world where 98% of them are created with M$ Word. Whodo should spend less time denying there are problems, "shooting the messenger", and more time fixing them. I should spend less time feeling the need to respond to his repeated abdications of responsibility. I understand you are a "newb" when it comes to software project management, for which you have no formal training, so the mistake is understandable. You should at least have some knowledge by forum ettiquette (and personal responsibility) by now. As overall project co-ordinator the buck stops at you, and you share both the pain and the praise. Thank you for volunteering.

@ Trio

trio wrote:
I admire ecomoney's real life work of refurbishing old computer for donations..but this is too much...


This is as much as it is because I have the "real life" experience of working with the people that *need* puppy linux (not as a "hobby") to improve their quality of life/get their information/open their C.V.'s. As the bug still isnt fixed, then Ive obviously miscommunicated it to the people responsible, and Im sorry for any offense or discouragement Ive caused, however well-intentioned.

Thanks for starting a thread explaining the function of this forum section. It was set (up at my request) after I invited discussion on how the bugs got in.

http://www.murga-linux.com/puppy/viewtopic.php?t=40845

It was discovered in the investigation that many of the bugs in 4.2.0 had been previously reported in the Alpha/Beta/RC stages, including the abiword one that was included relatively late in the testing process. It was explained they were missed because the of the linear nature of the single bugreporting thread made it difficult to track the bug reports to conclusion/resolution.

Ttuxxx had the (IMHO excellent) idea to switch to a "thread per bug" approach as one of the conclusions of that investigation. This makes it easier to track the bugs and tick them off when they are completed, so they wont get released with the distro. The forum system itself naturally puts bug reports/posts in order of when they were last commented on. This way less important bugs do not receive any attention and naturally sink to the bottom of the list, and the more important ones stay at the top.

With regard your suggested notation

Quote:
BUGS= malfunctioning of apps/wm/etc or even the apps just don't work totally
MISSING FEATURES= well, it is clear...maybe you know what is missing and want to suggest that it should be included
WISHES= what you actually want differently ..maybe different apps or even different WM
IGNORANCE= just simply you don't know about these things, please just ask...somebody will answer.....


I would suggest, as this section is designed simply for bugs, the following notation

[BUG=1/10] Bug, and the perceived severity of that bug (on a scale of 1-10) from a "Linux Newbs" point of view. Check the mission statement clarification of the "Linux Newb" bit.
[FIXED] At the point the issue is considered resolved In the opinion of the thread starter or Project co-ordinator (who has moderation abilities in this forum only).

Feature requests are still dealt with in the main "Suggestions" section of the forum. The project co-ordinator can sort this list in post count order to help research what people may require to be included in the release. This can also be listed by count order with keyword (i.e. "docx"). This way the "All the Applications Needed for Daily Use" Mission iobjective can be better met, and he can assess the risk (in terms of bugs) in introducing them. Missing features are similarly covered in this forum.

For the [IGNORANCE], The more bug reports we get, and act upon, the better puppy becomes. If there is something Ive learnt from this, its that if something goes wrong, you cant rely on the person who discovered the problem to plead ignorance.

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trio


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PostPosted: Wed 29 Apr 2009, 10:41    Post subject:  

Ecomoney

Well, you missed my point. What I was trying to say to you and all, report bugs as bugs, if you're not sure, don't put bugs in your post title, maybe like I did in this section (cross check please) because I wasn't sure that it's a bug, maybe just my system.

And, please don't take things too personal. You're trying to help, do it more elegantly. No win or loose, puppy wins at the end, right? Also Maybe you don't feel like bragging, but it sounds like that, saying like "I got a college degree in bla bla bla..." And I don't say that whodo is "clean" as in no guilt at all, yes, he has short fuse also. Maybe I have done my part too..but creating a neverending dispute will NOT make puppy better.

Frankly speaking, I have no idea anymore how to keep you guys calm and talk it over. Even posting this thread, which at first I mean to get things straight but seems now going to the same direction again..I'm beginning to regret posting this thread..

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ecomoney


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PostPosted: Wed 29 Apr 2009, 11:09    Post subject:  

Yes, trio, I agree. I havnt posted this information about myself before (in the four years Ive been with puppy) for fear people would see me as a braggart. Ive already had to admit to being sent on a government work program (of the type whodo used to manage) to excuse myself for failing as project co-ordinator the Puppy Phoenix project (so far!). Im worried Im looking more and more like a facebook profile every day.....speaking of which Im actually quite worried because whodo can see my facebook profile (hes a "friend" on there) and he would know Im can at time, not be anything like as respectable as my background/projects would suggest. On the other hand hes got a beard...

Ive learnt a lot about the things Ive done because Ive never believed I knew it all already. I think you exactly right, a post from our co-ordinator saying "yes I made a mistake, it was for these reasons and I will be careful more mistakes like it wont happen again" would go a long way to calming everyone down and getting them back to work. By gum Ive apologised enough.

Speaking of back to work....

Quote:
What I was trying to say to you and all, report bugs as bugs, if you're not sure, don't put bugs in your post title, maybe like I did in this section (cross check please) because I wasn't sure that it's a bug, maybe just my system.


Yes you did, and I didint answer that one properly, I just used it in suggesting a sliding scale [BUG1-10] of severity. But what your saying is what shall we use as a "[IS THIS A BUG AT ALL?] tag hmmmm.......

[BUG?]

In which case the correct notation for the bug about the jwm workpace switching of the mouse wheel over the desktop, in the perception of how much of an inconvenience it is to "linux newbs", would be

[BUG?=7]Mouse wheel over desktop causes applications to "Disappear"

We then when on to find out it may be a bug to Linux Newbs....but its a feature to its developers Rolling Eyes This is not the way to take on Micro$oft!

[/quote]

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Flash
Official Dog Handler


Joined: 04 May 2005
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PostPosted: Wed 29 Apr 2009, 11:34    Post subject:  

Ecomoney, you're not saying that anything you don't like is a bug are you? That seems to be a pretty common definition. Laughing

I've given some thought to making bug reporting useful and efficient. It's not something that can be done without active filtering by someone who knows Puppy inside and out.

If I run into a problem with Puppy, how do I know if it's caused by a bug (by the Wikipedia definition given above), my own ignorance and inexperience, or just plain old stupidity? I don't know any formula that will answer that question, except to present it to the community and hope for the best. So it's unavoidable that people will post all kinds of things in a bug reporting forum that will turn out not to be "actual" bugs. There's just no way to tell that at first. How to design a bug reporting system that works to separate the junk from the real bugs, and make it easier for everyone to keep track of the work that's being done?

This forum is certainly not ideal for bug eradication. A thread can be like a cocktail party, with a hundred different discussions about everything under the sun all going on at once. It seems to me that what is needed is both forum software better suited to dealing with bugs, and someone who knows Puppy intimately and will spend the time to edit the various discussions. Perhaps this miracle software already exists.
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ecomoney


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PostPosted: Wed 29 Apr 2009, 12:01    Post subject:  

Well heres links to the one that phpbb themselves use....how "miraculous" you see it depends on what it is compared against. The PHPBB system works pretty well.

http://www.phpbb.com/community/viewtopic.php?t=175050
http://phpbt.sourceforge.net/

Ive made the suggestion before that a few mods could be applied to the forum in order to customize it to better develop puppy on. I used to be a phpbb developer too (heres one of the sites Ive designed)

For the moment though, were using the actual forum system itself for raising the most posted about bugs/topics to the top of the list. It may be better to see how it goes for now. The only thing I can see now is should a section mod on here be allowed to only edit the first posts title, but not the content of other peoples posts....or remove them altogether? Some of the ones deleted are bugs to by definition by our mission statement....I will explain

I like the scrollwheel on the desktop feature too. I would give it up gladly if I though if it would double the number if people using puppy/linux and not using Micro$oft. If our mission is to be "extremely friendly to linux newbs", then to succeed we must define bugs as anything that makes Puppy Linux "extremely unfriendly to linux newbs".......and sometimes thats whole developers Wink

Thanks for coming and keeping an eye on the place flash, im glad your reading. Your presence is much needed at the moment.

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WhoDo


Joined: 11 Jul 2006
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PostPosted: Thu 30 Apr 2009, 09:14    Post subject:  

Before I respond to this post, I want to make it perfectly clear that I am quite calm ... at the moment ... and not responding from any anger, angst, personal animosity etc. Having said that, here we go "one last time with feeling..."

ecomoney wrote:
The top linux "just works" livecd/starter distro should be able to open Word Documents in a world where 98% of them are created with M$ Word.

Yes it should ... and it can and does do precisely that! There must NOT be an overstatement of the degree of the problem, any more than a misstatement that a problem actually exists in the first place! That just deprives the devs of their right to choose what most needs their attention. Keep doing that and you end up getting no attention at all!

Consider this; Abiword in Puppy opens all versions of Microsoft Word document formats, from the archaic Word for Windows right through to Word 2003. The only one that Abiword in Puppy doesn't open correctly first time every time is the most recent, most hashed about format introduced by Microsoft - the Word 2007 .docx format. Heck, even Microsoft Word 2003 doesn't do that without a patch!

Sure, there was a problem in Abiword with some Word documents containing some changed fonts that was introduced without our knowledge by the Abiword team. Stuff happens. We addressed that issue immediately it was discovered and released a patch virtually straight away. There was a link to the location of that patch posted on the download page at puppylinux.org within 24 hours of it going up at the forum. How long did Word 2003 users have to wait for Microsoft to release the patch to allow them to open 2007's .docx format? Months! How big is their development team? You do the math!

ecomoney wrote:
Whodo should spend less time denying there are problems, "shooting the messenger", and more time fixing them. I should spend less time feeling the need to respond to his repeated abdications of responsibility.

I have NEVER denied there were bugs in 4.2; heck I even started the threads to allow them to be posted and I started the thread where the patches and updates to fix them were posted! On the subject of fixing bugs, I have made it clear from day 1 that I am not a bug chaser or a bug fixer. I am a project coordinator, nothing more or less. How can anyone "abdicate responsibility" for something when they never had it in the first place?

ecomoney wrote:
I understand you are a "newb" when it comes to software project management, for which you have no formal training, so the mistake is understandable. You should at least have some knowledge by forum ettiquette (and personal responsibility) by now. As overall project co-ordinator the buck stops at you, and you share both the pain and the praise. Thank you for volunteering.

Then your understanding of this issue, as with everything else so far IMHO, is entirely incorrect! I have never posted my resume for you or anyone else to critique. You are making assumptions that you have no foundation for in fact, as per usual in my experience. I will not be drawn into any silly debate about my qualifications, especially with someone whose track record of performance in the role here is virtually non-existent, despite repeated references to their alleged vast experience and seemingly impeccable qualifications for the task! Reasonable people will judge me on my actual performances for Puppy, and not by some arbitrary and presumptuous benchmark of whether or not I possess this or that qualification for the role.

ecomoney wrote:
It was discovered in the investigation that many of the bugs in 4.2.0 had been previously reported in the Alpha/Beta/RC stages, including the abiword one that was included relatively late in the testing process. It was explained they were missed because the of the linear nature of the single bugreporting thread made it difficult to track the bug reports to conclusion/resolution.

Citations please. Who explained? Where did they explain? How many is "many"? Certainly there were reports of some bugs in the development stages of 4.2 that weren't resolved by the time that 4.2 Final was posted. That can certainly happen, but it had nothing to do with "the linear nature of the single bugreporting thread"! I certainly don't recall ever making that excuse for any of my perceived "failures" where 4.2 is concerned.

The fact is that I made it my practice to troll through each and every one of those Bugs & Fixes threads, post by post, checking off bug reports against fixes provided, before posting each subsequent release. Could I have missed some? Sure! OTOH, most were picked up, patched up and sent packing! I filled a notebook with my checknotes in the process. If any bugs didn't get fixed it was most likely because they weren't on any of the dev's radar at the time. How is that possible? We are a team of volunteers. Volunteers do what they can when they can! We are NOT Canonical, Red Hat or Microsoft! We can't swing in a team of expert developers to handle a specific problem any time we feel like it!

ecomoney wrote:
Ttuxxx had the (IMHO excellent) idea to switch to a "thread per bug" approach as one of the conclusions of that investigation. This makes it easier to track the bugs and tick them off when they are completed, so they wont get released with the distro.

Well it MIGHT, but only if people post "bugs" and nothing else. No-one wants to wade through pages of complaints to find the one genuine problem that can be addressed. Flooding the "bugs" forum with what YOU or your users consider are "bugs" is NOT the way to win friends among the terrific crew of developers who volunteer their time and expertise to fix such things for us.

I feel like I'm beating my head against a brick wall trying to get you to see that what you are doing is COUNTERPRODUCTIVE to the very aims you claim to espouse! It is not what you are saying but the way you are saying it and the annoying frequency with which you repeat things! The "squeaky wheel" philosophy only works for a very short while before the mechanics get fed up with greasing it and condemn it to the scrap heap!

ecomoney wrote:
I would suggest, as this section is designed simply for bugs, the following notation

[BUG=1/10] Bug, and the perceived severity of that bug (on a scale of 1-10) from a "Linux Newbs" point of view.

I'm sorry but that is patently absurd. Why would a developer pay any attention to a "Linux Newbs" assessment of bug severity, assuming the "newb" even knew what a bug was? Time and again you have proven the point that what YOU perceive as "critical" someone more experienced may consider relatively "minor".

And before you start tugging at people's heart strings and trotting out the old stories of how important Puppy is to your poverty-stricken clients, and how opening .docx files could be a life and death problem in Scunthorpe, this isn't about perceptions its about reality! The time any of our devs has available is always, ALWAYS limited, but you want them to effectively waste what little time they have with something that can be easily resolved by applying a quick patch or a modicum of education, while other problems that may have far greater overall impact remain untouched?

Let's take a case in point; the so-called "mouse wheel bug". We all know that is nothing more than designed behaviour on the part of the JWM window manager, not a bug at all. But your "newbs" THINK it's a bug, and that's what matters, right? So you want a talented dev like Patriot to spend what little spare time he has to donate to Puppy in recompiling JWM-2.02 to remove that "feature" simply because you don't think your "newbs" should have to learn how to deal with it? Tell me you can see just how ridiculous that is!

Now to recap: I have responded to your post thoughtfully, have I not? I have not resorted to any form of personal abuse, isn't that so? And despite your clearly unflattering characterisation of me, my experience and my willingness to accept the responsibility of my position as Coordinator, I have not retaliated in any way, shape or form, isn't that so? Assuming you can accept the facts of that, please stop trying to drop forge the role of Project Coordinator or me into your particular idea of what is right or ideal. No-one can measure up to that level of "perfection", and I have no intention of even trying. Take it or leave it; your choice.

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ecomoney


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PostPosted: Thu 30 Apr 2009, 11:39    Post subject:  

You have reponded to it thoughtfully whodo, Thank you. Ive realised taking your time up with this is counterproductive to getting things done (my projects are overdue too!). Im short on time so I will have to pass on your some of the questions you raise for now (with apologies)...except just one.

[quote=whodo]Why would a developer pay any attention to a "Linux Newbs" assessment of bug severity[/quote]

Because their mission is to produce a distribution that is "friendly to linux newbies".

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trapster


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PostPosted: Thu 30 Apr 2009, 12:23    Post subject:  

I say we make puppy do everything exactly like windows does. Newbs should then not be confused.

For goodness sake, we sure would hate for them to have to learn anything.

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PostPosted: Thu 30 Apr 2009, 16:18    Post subject:  

Trapster, currently more people go to the trouble of pirating Windows than use puppy linux...or any linux for free. Its a very sad fact. People have to be using linux already to start finding out about it, and how good it is (and Windows isnt).

And that means making the learning curve shallow AT FIRST

The Windows GUI is limited, and theyre stuck with that. With linux its possible to customize and make it more powerful...they will learn about multiple desktops and mouse wheel switching AFTER they come to linux.....the trick to people learning is to get them here in the first place.

I look after about 100 normal computer users in my town, and I ran a free cybercafe where anyone could walk in off the street. This is what I had to do to puppy linux to get them to use it AT ALL. Long term change requires short term compromise. Theres plenty of other distributions that my users have gone on to using (i.e. Ubuntu, Red Hat) once they have caught the Linux "bug", puppy has a unique place to get them Weaned off Redmund in the first place, and willing to experiment more.

Back to bugs...I need to do some forum re-reading for WhoDo and get some links....

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puppyluvr


Joined: 06 Jan 2008
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PostPosted: Thu 30 Apr 2009, 16:55    Post subject:  

Very Happy Hello,
Quote:
I say we make puppy do everything exactly like windows does. Newbs should then not be confused. For goodness sake, we sure would hate for them to have to learn anything.


Cool Someone once said the about the same thing to me..I see his point now....

How about we make a "Windoze" .pet???
Razz Window manager, Icons, GUI, App interfaces, Program names, everything...Set Rox to double click, set Jwm to one desktop, ect..
Include a lot of "sleep" commands , and an occasional crash to make them feel at home...

Anyone know a good Lawyer????
I mean that is still allowed on the forum???
Oh, I better not go there!!! (again LOL) Shocked
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Sylvander

Joined: 15 Dec 2008
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PostPosted: Thu 30 Apr 2009, 17:14    Post subject:  

Nice one guys. Very Happy

1. As you give, so you SHOULD receive.

And therefore:
2. As you give, so you SHALL receive.

And so:
3. He who gives respect tends to get it also.

And:
4. He who wants to be respected, should give it whenever and wherever it is due.
Try not to allow your emotions [the fact that you feel upset & insulted] prevent you from giving credit where credit is due.
And hopefully the wounds will heal and the pain will fade, and what you will be left with is increased understanding and wisdom.

5. Perhaps this highlights that a better organizational structure is needed.
Perhaps a more formal method of submitting problem reports, with someone designated to examine those and either block them as time wasting, or pass them on up the hierarchy for consideration.
Just so long as good ones get through and bad ones don't.
If in doubt, let it through and someone higher up can block it if they are certain it has no merit.
And eventually someone senior takes a look at all the blocked reports to check them out, so everyone who blocks knows their work will be checked at some point.
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