Wednesday, 18 September 2013

The importance of free and open discussion in projects

This page is written in response to the lies that +Phil Daintree has written about me, and spread on the internet. Despite years of searching he has been unable to find anything I have written that is untrue, and he has had to resort to vague generalities, faked emails, and badly fabricated screenshots (you can see the joins if you zoom in using any bit mapped image editor). +Phil Daintree  is welcome to make any comments to these pages, as he has done in the past. If I agree with what he says I will amend my writings, if I do not agree I have allowed his comments to stand next to mine so that people can make their own judgements. I have every confidence in the intelligence of readers to make a sensible judgement based on the facts. +Phil Daintree will not allow me the right of reply to any of the lies he has told about me. It seems to me significant that he realises that if people see both sides of the argument they will see through his lies.

+Phil Daintree has frequently said on webERP that when he gives his opinion on a subject then nobody is allowed to contradict his opinion and no more discussion on the subject should happen. People who ignore this and express different opinions on any subject find themselves banned from any future discussions.

This is fine as long as the decision that +Phil Daintree has come up with is correct, and that no better solution can ever exist. However when the decision is wrong then the repercussions can be very damaging.

For instance recently +Phil Daintree decided to use regular expressions to filter input into forms. This is a good idea in theory, but needs careful thought and planning, as the implications for non English characters are huge. As Phil had announced this decision as his, then no discussion was allowed.

We now have a webERP system (versions 4.11 and 4.11.1) which is totally unusable to anybody not using the standard 26 English alphabet characters. Not only this, but many of the other bugs already found in 4.11.1 and many of the others that await discovery could have been avoided by allowing free and open discussions.

This is a mistake that we intend to avoid in +KwaMoja. Anybody is allowed to contribute anything to any discussion. Even arguments are good as they force both sides to think through their ideas carefully.

"The only people who are afraid to argue are those who know themselves to be wrong".

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