[ros-release] p2os Maintenance status

Aris Synodinos asynodin at mech.upatras.gr
Mon Jun 2 13:29:48 UTC 2014

Dear all,

After carefully reading everyone's suggestion I will go ahead and file pull
requests against the driver to Hunter. However I must point out the
following just to clear out why this whole discussion was created in the
first place.

In the Maintenance Guide link provided by Tully it says the following about
the responsibilities of a maintainer:

   1. Moderating the issue tracker
   2. Releasing the package with bloom <http://wiki.ros.org/bloom> for the
   distribution you are a maintainer for
   3. Monitoring and updating the documentation.

Commenting on those responsibilities, it appears that Hunter is not really
fulfilling his role. The issue tracker is not moderated. I never really got
an answer on my question, he just closed the issue. Also, the package has
not been maintained for more than a while. Dependencies are wrong, stating
rqt in his package.xml, while the dashboard is using wxwidgets with a
manifest.xml (in groovy, which is deprecated). The documentation is not
really updated, in other parts it says that gazebo is working while in
others it says gazebo integration in the todo list. There is no hydro (or
indigo) specific branch and the package names are not compliant to the ROS
standards "p2os_urdf" instead of p2os_description, etc. I could go on and
fill this list but I see no reason.

In the same link you suggested (which of course I had read before
contacting the list) it also says "Claiming Maintainership" which I did
since I saw all these issues.

In the Checklist For Package Maintainers:
In http://www.ros.org/debbuild/hydro.html the status is set to "unknown"
In http://jenkins.ros.org/view/Hdoc/ there is no mention of a p2os package
In http://jenkins.ros.org/view/Hdev/ there is also no mention of a p2os

No changes are mentioned in http://wiki.ros.org/hydro/Migration for p2os
Running catkin_lint on the packages throws obvious errors
No gtests are used and in CMakeLists there is no if(CATKIN_ENABLE_TESTING)

Lastly, I want to point out the obvious, that I did not start this
discussion to cause problems to the community. This issue has been around
Pioneer robots in the last 2 generations of ROS, where very few work has
been pushed to update the drivers with all the advancements done by ROS
team. Hunter helped out a lot by keeping p2os alive, but he has not really
contributed since more than a year. My decision to claim maintainership was
*after* talking to the pioneer-sig (which pretty much involves most active
pioneer/ros users) and *after* they encouraged me to do so.
The feedback I received from Reed Hedges
<https://plus.google.com/u/0/104350589418268258055?prsrc=4> and Dereck
Wonnacott <https://plus.google.com/u/0/102734305152302697438?prsrc=4> (main
contributors and maintainers of rosaria) was the main reason I still
believe that trying to update an almost dead repository by making pull
requests is not going to be helpful (or efficient) to the community.


On Sat, May 31, 2014 at 4:50 AM, Tully Foote <tfoote at osrfoundation.org>

> Hi Aris,
> Please see our guide to maintenance: http://wiki.ros.org/MaintenanceGuide
> As Austin pointed out Hunter is fulfilling his role as a package
> maintainer.
> In general, a maintainer in good standing they is the authority on the
> project and we will only look to find a new maintainer when they choose to
> step down. And when they step down we will usually look for people already
> actively involved with the project to take over.
> I'll echo Austin's suggestion that you open issues and file pull requests
> against the driver. You do not need to be a maintainer to contribute to any
> package.
> Tully
> On Thu, May 29, 2014 at 9:54 AM, Austin Hendrix <legotown at aol.com> wrote:
>>  Background:
>> The existing p2os repository is https://github.com/allenh1/p2os
>> The issue in question about transferring ownership is
>> https://github.com/allenh1/p2os/issues/14
>> In general, if a ROS package is missing functionality or has bugs, you
>> should file a bug report, to let the maintainer know that there is a
>> problem. If you have fixes for a particular bug or additional features, you
>> should submit them as a pull request.
>> Looking at the issue history for the p2os driver, I see that the level of
>> support is actually quite good: there are no open bug reports, no open pull
>> requests, and there has been a new release fairly quickly after major
>> issues were addressed.
>> Aris: I suggest you fork the github repository, and submit your fixes as
>> pull requests. If you'd like the maintainer to make a release of the p2os
>> driver into Hydro or Indigo, open an issue requesting a release, and see
>> what the response is.
>> Regards,
>> -Austin
>> On 05/29/2014 07:37 AM, Gert Kanter wrote:
>>  Hi!
>> I, for one, am in favor of taking over maintainership. If Hunter Allen is
>> not motivated (or too busy etc) maintaining the package (already two ROS
>> releases!), then in the interest of the community, a willing and active new
>> maintainer should be able to pick up the slack. This way the original
>> contributors of the p2os can still be (more prominently) credited for their
>> previous contributions, especially if you have originally forked the
>> improved p2os from the old p2os. I also agree that yet another package that
>> is a successor of a unmaintained package just adds confusion for the
>> community (and obscures the actively maintained package from new ROS users).
>>  It would be best if Hunter would approve of this action, of course.
>>  Disclaimer: I am working on a robot with the Pioneer mobile platform
>> with p2os and I am very interested in the mentioned new developments in
>> your private repository.
>>  Just my two cents,
>>  Gert Kanter
>> 2014-05-29 16:19 GMT+03:00 Aris Synodinos <asynodin at mech.upatras.gr>:
>>> Hi,
>>> I have just recently sent the following(cited) email about the
>>> maintenance status of p2os, but since I was not a member of the list, the
>>> email has not been made public. I am therefore forwarding the email again,
>>> hoping that you will not receive it twice. Just yesterday the maintainer of
>>> p2os pushed a new commit to the p2os package, which is however mostly
>>> unmaintained and old (no rqt - no ros_control - no simulation etc). I have
>>> contacted the ros-sig-pioneer mailing list as you can see in the previous
>>> email and we want to not mix things up for the community.
>>> Currently there are two drivers for pioneer robots, rosaria and p2os.
>>> Rosaria is actively maintained by the members of ros-sig-pioneer and uses
>>> libaria to communicate with the robots. P2os however, which dates back to
>>> the stage driver, has been left without proper ros support for a long time,
>>> with no major upgrade ever since electric. Hunter Allen used a part of
>>> Dereck Wonnacott's work ( https://github.com/dawonn/ros-p2os-driver )
>>>  and ported p2os to groovy, using bloom for releasing the code with debs.
>>> The problem is that H. Allen is not updating the driver (very little
>>> support) and due to the fact that he has released the driver with the p2os
>>> package name, no one else can take ownership/maintainership without causing
>>> unnecessary confusion to the community. The result is very poor support for
>>> p2os, (until yesterday there were no install targets for p2os, so the deb
>>> packages were empty) and outdated support (groovy). I have tried contacting
>>> H. Allen about stepping up to the job, but he closed the issue without
>>> responding.
>>> What is the proper way to proceed? Is it preferable to release a new
>>> package under a different name? I will upload my code publicly on github as
>>> soon as this is resolved, under the same (p2os) or a different name if that
>>> is requested. Currently, my code is in a private bitbucket repository.
>>> Regards,
>>> Aris
>>> On Sun, May 25, 2014 at 10:30 AM, Aris Synodinos <
>>> asynodin at mech.upatras.gr> wrote:
>>>> After contacting the ros-sig-pioneer mailing list, and since the
>>>> previous maintainer is unfortunately not responding and has stopped
>>>> maintaining the p2os package, I am willing to step up and claim
>>>> maintainership of the package.
>>>> I have fixed the issues that exist for groovy (no install directives in
>>>> cmake making the debian package unusable), added features in hydro (moveit
>>>> integration, rqt_dashboard etc) and am willing to continue maintaining it
>>>> for future versions (indigo etc).
>>>> Please inform me how to proceed for this to happen. Currently I have
>>>> published all my work in a private repo in bitbucket so as not to cause
>>>> confusion to the community, but of course I will publish this in github
>>>> when this is desirable.
>>>> Here is the issue I created for the maintainership status in github:
>>>> https://github.com/allenh1/p2os/issues/14
>>>> Here is the mail in the ros-sig-pioneer mailing list:
>>>> https://groups.google.com/forum/?fromgroups#!topic/ros-sig-pioneer/GVe3IQUn7cU
>>>>  --
>>>> Aris Synodinos
>>>> PhD Student
>>>> Robotics Grouphttps://github.com/dawonn/ros-p2os-driver
>>>> Mechanical and Aeronautics Engineering Department
>>>> Tel. +30-2610-996248
>>>> e-mail: asynodin at mech.upatras.gr
>>>> Web: http://robotics.mech.upatras.gr/
>>>  --
>>> Aris Synodinos
>>> PhD Student
>>> Robotics Group
>>> Mechanical and Aeronautics Engineering Department
>>> Tel. +30-2610-996248
>>> e-mail: asynodin at mech.upatras.gr
>>> Web: http://robotics.mech.upatras.gr/
>>> _______________________________________________
>>> ros-release mailing list
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Aris Synodinos
PhD Student
Robotics Group
Mechanical and Aeronautics Engineering Department
Tel. +30-2610-996248
e-mail: asynodin at mech.upatras.gr
Web: http://robotics.mech.upatras.gr/
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