Posted by: Anonymous Coward
on June 13, 2005 12:54 AM
I seriously doubt that you will ever get the sales and engeneering people to agree on a versioning system. They originated on different planets, and how they all got here is a mystery beyond comprehension. As you pointed out, the marketing types want something that feels good to the consumer, and the engeneer wants something that tells something about the status of his/her project. They might be able to come to terms except that there are the manager types who want the final result by 3 hours ago and don't care whether it works or not.
Then to complicate things, within the engeneers there isn't even agreement as to whether a software system is ever in a finnished state or not. Thus some pick a numbering system that indicates continuing work, while others pick a numbering scheme that identifies specific accomplishments.
To complicate matters, you have customers who want to know that the system they get has continuing development and support. You also have customers who don't want any changes to the software they use -- almost to the point where they would rather live with the bugs that plague them than to have them fixed and create any change whatsoever. Numbering systems mean different things to each of these two groups. What makes sense to one group makes confusion to the other.
By the way, how were we going to figure out a generic versioning system that was going to work for everyone? And you thought we were all just people.
I work with a sound system at the church I go to. I had a sound engeneer come in to go over things we can do to make the media systems more effective. Among other things, he pointed out to me that the best it is ever possible to do is to satisfy 85% of the people in the room at any time. With a group of 250 or so, that means that at best I will always have 35-40 unhappy people. The same ratios probably apply to most other areas of life. So, are you going to make the noisy 1% happy and risk creating another 1% that are noisy and unhappy, or are you going to try to reach the masses and let the 1% be noisy, or are you going to just do it your own way knowing that there will likely be a noisy 1% of discontents anyway?
Some things can not be perfected. This is, I believe one of the main reasons for having several compeeting systems or methods in each field. Now if we could just get the idea through people's heads that what works well for them isn't necessarily the perfect solution for everyone else we'd be all set. Oh wait. There will probably always be at least 15% of us humans that believe that their solution is absolutely the only one and everyone else is going to hell.