Sep 9, 2017
All open source projects live or die by their contributors. This BOF will discuss ways of encouraging people to contribute to GCC, and to continue maintaining GCC and other parts of the toolchain. We will explore a number of questions, such as: What is the reward for contributing to GCC? Is patch review a thankless task, where so often it would be easier to write the patch yourself than explain things to someone else? How is patch review recognized? Are the current commit rules the best we can have? Is it best for GCC to obsolete ports without maintainers, or is a large number of targets one of GCC's strengths? Are too many of GCC's contributors beholden to corporate interests? How will GCC survive in the face of competing open source compilers, especially if the corporate support moves to a competing compiler? This BOF will start with a very short talk on economics, to shed some light on what drives people to contribute and maintain free software.
The GNU Compiler Collection includes front ends for C, C++, Objective-C, Fortran, Ada, and Go, as well as libraries for these languages (libstdc++,...). GCC was originally written as the compiler for the GNU operating system. The GNU system was developed to be 100% free software, free in the sense that it respects the user's freedom.
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