What priorities should the EPD dev team have?

Like any software project, the EPD product is developed by a team that has limited resources. Given that fact, I’m wondering what the current userbase of EPD thinks is more important for us to spend our time on? Should we prioritize ourselves along the lines of:

  1. Tracking the current releases of all included projects, even if doing so breaks backwards-compatibility in terms of API and ABI?
  2. Or, should we apply our resources to fixing bugs and keeping a stable API and ABI?

I think of this as the same sort of division you might run into in regards to picking a Linux distribution. Are you more interested in a Fedora Core or a RedHat Enterprise Linux? Or are there other options and/or models for us to follow? Right now, I’d have to classify our position statement as doing (1) and, as available on explicitly identified releases, doing (2) as required. Is that what the user community needs and wants though?

We haven’t had much feedback along these lines, though we can read some into the various comments we get about “Why does EPD include that version of project X when it is 6 months old?” The problem with relying on those though is that you don’t hear from the people who want that stability of not upgrading to the latest and greatest all of the time. No one sends e-mails that say “Please don’t upgrade your product to that newly released version of component X”. Well, at least I’ve never received one like that.

I should point out that while I’m explicitly looking for feedback and discussion about this (probably best if done on the epd-users mailing list, though I will also try and monitor this blog post) any feedback from paying customers takes precedence. But hopefully that makes sense and doesn’t come as a shock to anyone. I will also admit that I’m somewhat expecting any responses to this to be self-selecting in that I expect most of the readers of this blog to fall into the “hobbyist”, “individual developer”, or “early adopter” camp and those groups tend to want the latest and greatest. They don’t mind the upgrade treadmill as much as large corporations. However, I’m still asking the question because I’m making assumptions and I’d much rather have some facts. Please speak up and let us know your thoughts!

2 thoughts on “What priorities should the EPD dev team have?

  1. avatarDave Kirby

    I would really like a debian/ubuntu package – I have tried installing the individual packages separately, but to be honest the dependencies between the different Enthought packages defeated me. having an all-in-one distribution for Ubuntu would be great.

    Ubuntu is probably the most widely used Linux desktop, and I am astonished that it is not supported.

    Reply
  2. avatardpeterson

    Hi Dave Kirby,

    While I agree that Ubuntu is a very popular desktop for individual users, it is hard to make a business case for building and supporting EPD on it. For one thing, not a single Enterprise customer for EPD has mentioned needing it. Also, there are very few individuals who’ve purchased subscriptions on the platform that probably gets the most benefit from EPD (Windows.) I can’t imagine we’d get more purchases from Ubuntu users.

    All that being said, rest assured we want to provide EPD on more platforms and Ubuntu is near the front of that list. We just have to have enough paying customers to make it supportable.

    Reply

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