On DebGem

I feel I should comment on the whole DebGem thing.

About a week ago, the guys from that project mailed me, stating that they were about to go public, and if I would please have a look at it before they would do so and perhaps give some constructive criticism.

So I did. I must say I wasn't very impressed, initially. What you get there is what the name suggests: a Ruby Gem, but then just repackaged as a Debian package. As in, files laid out exactly the same way. As in, still not FHS compliant. As in, many other problems.

I came up with a list of problems that was quite long, and they've fixed most of them; but the fundamental problem—that RubyGems are peculiar beasts, making it hard, if not impossible, for Debian people to package them so that they adhere to Debian's strict quality requirements—remains, and this service does not (or cannot) solve that.

To be sure, it's a step in the right direction, which will ease the maintenance of Ruby software on many a Debian system, and for that they deserve praise. However, it is not a solution; much more work needs to be done—and it needs to be done within the Ruby community.