[petsc-dev] Patch review

Jed Brown jedbrown at mcs.anl.gov
Fri Aug 24 18:44:30 CDT 2012

On Fri, Aug 24, 2012 at 6:38 PM, Jie Chen <jiechen at mcs.anl.gov> wrote:

> I am in fact somewhat reluctant to push out everything before it is
> formally published and fully tested. The patch consists of more than one
> algorithmic developments that may be far away from maturity (but they are
> likely to work), though the authors might be the only ones who care about
> the new algorithms at this point. Besides, the codes are now full of hacks
> and lack documentation. I have no problem reverting petsc to the old
> version temporarily, and I promise I will clean everything to meet the
> production requirement, although this might not happen in a very short
> time. Meanwhile I think it also does not hurt to keep the patch as is, as
> the modification is likely to be used by the author circle only.

There isn't a problem with experimental code, but if you are going to push
experimental code, it should conform to the usual standards. No need to
revert the patch unless you've already decided it is a failed experiment.

If something is genuinely useful, we certainly like to have it in our bag
of tricks immediately. Waiting until a paper is published to put it in the
repo just means that it will take longer to find use in real applications.
As far as I'm concerned, an ideal scenario is that by the time someone
reads the paper, they already have the functionality in a released version
of PETSc, thus can experiment on their own problems without even
recompiling. (This being the lowest possible effort, it maximizes the
chances of finding other applications where the method is useful, thus
maximizing citations, in case that is the metric you care about.)
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