Well, it seems that my stupid questions and bad starts have actually been useful.
In learning all the right ways to write patches for the Wine project, I got corrected a lot by the various developers. This is a much better situation to be in than the dreadful dead-air you can sometimes find on other development mailing lists where the more experienced project members just ignore questions and don’t bother to critique patch submissions. That case is so much more frustrating.
On the Wine devel list, there was never a shortage of people trying to show me how to make my patches better. It took me several weeks to get a large chunk of code into the project, but in the end, it was well documented, had a test suite, used the correct debug channels, handled memory management correctly, and generally did everything the right way. On top of that success was the fact that the Wine Wiki FAQ, which is studiously kept up to date, ended up recording a lot of my questions (or more importantly, their answers). You’ll find a lot of “K. Cook” in the Coding Hints section now.
While there may be no such thing as a stupid question, they’re clearly newbie questions if everything you ask ends up in the FAQ. :) Hopefully my bumbling will be useful to other folks in the future.
© 2005, Kees Cook. This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 License.