[gmx-developers] FW: Gromacs quotes

Anton Feenstra k.a.feenstra at vu.nl
Thu Dec 20 10:34:11 CET 2012

Oh, this is a fine line to walk isn't it.

When first thinking about this, I thought taking them out is an easy and 
acceptable fix.

I've just read through the list briefly - :-)

I feel they are all in the same spirit, even the 'killing children' one 
isn't standing out that much besides 'Oh my god they killed kenny', or 
'chemical gasses filling lungs of little ones', 'shoot him in the back', 
and more.

I actually had a student complain about the 'killing children' in a 
practical last year; when I briefly explained she saw the humor of it.

If You Don't Like Cool Quotes Check Your GMXRC File_(Your Sysadmin)

On 20/12/12 02:02, Justin Lemkul wrote:
> If anything I have posted today has caused tension, conflict,
> anger/flaming or has detracted in any way from a constructive discourse,
> I apologize.  I hope nothing I have said crosses any professional lines,
> but we did discuss a very personal topic for me.  If the post(s) in
> question led to anyone having a "facepalm" moment or wanting to give the
> "gmx-dev finger," then so be it.
> I am not someone who is easily offended, but there is one topic that
> strikes a nerve with me, and it was raised earlier today.  I do not
> consciously choose to misinterpret anything; one cannot necessarily
> control a powerful emotion when triggered.  That said, the quote in
> question does not reduce me to a blubbering, nonfunctional state; I just
> think it is in poor taste in general and serves no productive purpose.
> I will note that I was not the first to raise the issue, so I suspect
> that this may be a problem for others.
> I will respect whatever decision is made by the developers and will
> recuse myself from any voting on Gerrit should anything be changed.
> Apparently my personal feelings on this particular issue may be seen as
> an impediment to otherwise objective judgment.  I've said what I think
> to be true and will say nothing more unless directly asked, and I agree
> with Szilard - this is an important topic, needs to be discussed, then
> left in the dust so we can move on to more significant and productive
> matters, of which I am glad to be a part.
> -Justin
> On 12/19/12 5:49 PM, Szilárd Páll wrote:
>> On Wed, Dec 19, 2012 at 7:58 PM, Mark Abraham <mark.j.abraham at gmail.com
>> <mailto:mark.j.abraham at gmail.com>> wrote:
>>     Thanks for the discussion - let's close the topic and keep the
>> list focussed
>>     on GROMACS development :-)
>> While I respect your call for no flaming, I personally don't feel that
>> the
>> discussion is closed and I think that this is a topic that, although it's
>> neither about science nor about GROMACS development strictly speaking,
>> it *does
>>   matter* and is very relevant to GROMACS.
>> Honestly, I would love to have the gmx-dev finger shown (why not in a
>> "Linusian"
>> manner) to all users bothered by the mere existence of some sentence
>> in the gcq
>> DB that they might find offensive and I'd be tempted to take the time
>> to tell
>> them to mind the science and use the env. var. if a quote with
>> obviously no
>> harmful intentions bothers them so much. As I said before I am *strongly*
>> opposing self-censorship driven by nothing else but a way to adhere to
>> the
>> cultural, ideological, or emotional state (all in all the "world
>> view") of some
>> user(s). In fact, I'd rather spend time with removing some boring
>> quotes than
>> arguing about this, there have been way to many of them showing up
>> lately :) !
>> However, this seems to be a real concern for some, including
>> developers, so in
>> order to avoid tension and internal conflicts, I think it's better to
>> take all
>> the anger and frustration out here and now, decide something, and
>> *then* move on.
>> This might sounds harsh, but let' be honest, "killing children"
>> "irrespective of
>> context" -- (*facepalm*) which shows that it's a purely personal and
>> emotionally
>> driven opinion  -- is only disturbing if actively misinterpreted. On
>> the other
>> hand, picking special interpretations is easy, for instance: the quotes
>> mentioning God or Jesus can be disturbing to some sensitive believers,
>> and the
>> ones mentioning "strike" or "torture" (both from Pulp Fiction quotes)
>> could
>> easily upset sensitive people who've had enough of both, possibly not
>> so long
>> ago -- and they would have all the right to request removal of Pulp
>> Fiction
>> quotes, after all few orders of magnitude more of their children have
>> been
>> killed (it's just that their stories are not turned into tv shows --
>> sorry
>> slightly offtopic).
>> Although I'd be angered and supportive of removal if any of the quotes
>> would
>> turn out to have an obvious agenda of spreading hate or clearly and
>> intentionally disturbing some people, I have to agree with Christoph
>> that as a
>> community respecting everyone draw their own lines and adhering to it
>> is silly.
>> I hope at this point we can agree that unless we have a consensus that
>> something
>> is not appropriate (and such a consensus can be simply driven by gmx-devs
>> community's own peculiar world view), blindly accepting personal
>> requests for
>> removal is a questionable practice.
>> And as any rules, this one also has a potential exception: if some
>> user would
>> start spamming or systematically annoying people because of a quote,
>> in the lack
>> of simple and effective defense I'd personally approve the removal
>> just to save
>> our time.
>> Cheers,
>> Szilárd
>>     --
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>>     gmx-developers at gromacs.org <mailto:gmx-developers at gromacs.org>
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  _____________ _______________________________________________________
|             |                                                       |
|  _   _  ___,| K. Anton Feenstra                                     |
| / \ / \'| | | IBIVU/Bioinformatics - Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam   |
|(   |   )| | | De Boelelaan 1081 - 1081 HV Amsterdam - Netherlands   |
| \_/ \_/ | | | Tel +31 20 59 87783 - Fax +31 20 59 87653 - Room P136 |
|             | Feenstra at few.vu.nl - www.few.vu.nl/~feenstra/         |
|             | "You Look Better Upside Down" (Throwing Muses)        |

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