[OS X TeX] [Yale] i-installer directories

Gary L. Gray gray at engr.psu.edu
Wed Dec 20 10:42:23 EST 2006

On Dec 20, 2006, at 10:15 AM, Michael Williams wrote:

> On Tue, Dec 19, 2006 at 11:37:02PM -0500, Alain Schremmer wrote:
>> b) If you just discovered that Wierda is not going to maintain his
>> distribution, then I wonder on what basis you can talk about "flame
>> fests and snarky insults".
> This is a high traffic list, with a low signal-to-noise ratio. It's
> quite possible to overlook things like this.
>> c) In any case, to label that way anything that I have read is,  
>> again,
>> surely a bit of an exageration.
> I disagree. This list has become highly dysfunctional and extremely
> unpleasant reading. I remain a subscriber in the hope of hearing news
> about the future of TeX on OS X, and because I find the occasional
> thread about, y'know, TeX on OS X interesting.
> Weeding through flamewars and carelessly written, incoherent screeds
> about, e.g., Claus's switcher, vi, and Microsoft Windows (seriously,
> what?!) to get to this useful information is not something I look
> forward to. I must admit to being disappointed by the lack of  
> restraint
> and leadership shown by some of the most experienced members of the
> list.

I would argue just the opposite -- this list, at least by my measure,  
has a very high signal-to-noise ratio. With almost 950 members, there  
are certainly as many viewpoints as subscribers. With this in mind,  
if I look back at the approximately 7500 messages from this year, I  
would say much less than 1-2% are rants of one sort or another. Sure,  
there was the mess with Mr. McDonnell, but in the end that proved to  
be valuable for Gerben and others (though much of it probably should  
have been done off-list). It is my opinion that many of the so-called  
flamewars (with the exception of some of the messages in the recent  
McDonnell and Gerhardt related threads) are merely lively discussions  
about important stuff that us happening "under the hood" of the TeX  
that we all use. Therefore, even those messages that are "noise" to  
some will likely prove to be valuable discussion to others on the  
list. I actually like it that this is such an active community with  
such a wide range of discussions and it would be a loss to everyone  
on this list if people like Bruno Voisin, Victor Ivrii, Herb Schulz,  
Claus Gerhardt, Peter Dyballa, and many others (to whom I apologize  
for leaving out) stopped participating. In fact, the quality of  
discussion on this list is such that Windows users are subscribing to  
get information (see Dec. 19 message from Mehmet Ergun)!

With this said, I do hope that everyone will pause and carefully  
consider what they have written before posting it to the list. I know  
that at the end of a bad day, it is easy to read a message and fly  
off the handle with a quick ill-considered reply.

Well, that my 2 small monetary units. Feel free to disagree, but  
please do so politely. :-)

All the best,

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