[Cocci] coccinelle: Convert comma to semicolons (was Re: [PATCH] checkpatch: Add test for comma use that should be semicolon)

Valdis Kl=?utf-8?Q?=c4=93?=tnieks valdis.kletnieks at vt.edu
Sat Sep 26 15:11:44 EDT 2020

On Fri, 25 Sep 2020 10:26:27 -0700, Joe Perches said:
> And the generic individual maintainer apply rate for
> each specific patch is always less than 50%.
> For instance the patches that converted the comma uses
> in if/do/while statements to use braces and semicolons
> from a month ago:

> 29 patches, 13 applied.

To be fair, it's *always* been hard to get pure style patches applied, because
they usually hit one of two types of code, with different results:

Some of them hit code that's been stable for a long time - and those patches
don't get applied because of the (admittedly small) risk that a "style" patch
may actually break something - yes, that *does* happen often enough to worry a
risk-adverse subtree maintainer.

Some of them hit code that's actively being worked on - and those patches don't
get applied because they can cause merge conflicts.

This is a hard problem to fix, because it's difficult to say that either of
those viewpoints is *totally* wrong. At best, you can make the case that some
maintainers are a tad over-zealous on their attitude. And since its *hard* to
find good maintainers, it's not possible to fix the problem by just putting
somebody else in charge of a subtree. It's theoretically possible to bypass a
problematic maintainer by sending the patch to the person one level up, or
directly to Linus - but although that usually works if you have an urgent patch
and the maintainer is on vacation or stubborn or whatever, that's got
essentially zero chance of succeeding for a mere style patch.

Unfortunately, although I understand the problem, I don't have a solution. It's
easy to tactfully say "this code is wrong, and here is the fix".  It's a lot
harder to find a tactful way to say "This person is wrong and should do it this
way", because code doesn't fight back when you offer constructive criticism....

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