Jeff Croft

I’m a product designer in Seattle, WA. I lead Design at a stealthy startup. I recently worked at Simply Measured, and previously co-founded Lendle.

Some of my past clients include Facebook, Microsoft, Yahoo!, and the University of Washington.

I’ve authored two books on web and interactive design and spoken at dozens of conferences around the world.

But seriously, who gives a shit?

Link // 07.28.2008 // 10:19 AM // 5 Comments

James Bennett: Let’s talk about DVCS

Distributed Version Control is still a bit over my head, but my general feeling is this: so far, I haven’t seen that git, bzr, or Mercurial offer anything I really, really need over Subversion. And I already know, like, and have integrated Subversion into my workflow. For now, I see no great reason for me personally to switch to DVCS. Your situation may be different, though.

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Comments

  1. 001 // Justin Lilly // 07.28.2008 // 11:16 AM

    Before I tried it, I didn’t think DVCS offered anything beyond geek-cred. Turns out, there’s a bit more.

    For me, the helpful feature was the ability to commit locally, then push to the central repository. Before dvcs, my process was to toy with a website/feature until it was done, then I would sync the 1 changeset to my centralized SVN server. Now, I preform much smaller changesets and more often then sync with the central server.

    What this has really offered is the ability to complete 90% of a feature and still have it under version control. I don’t have to worry about “Am I commiting broken code?”, I can just do some work, commit my changes and if I notice any bugs along the way, it doesn’t affect everyone else using my repo. I fix it and commit. Then when I sync, people get my work over the last hour or two. No broken features for them, easy commits and diffs for me.

    This goes two fold if you’re using some sort of automated deploy script a la capistrano to sync your server with a central repo.

  2. 002 // Jeff Croft // 07.28.2008 // 3:19 PM

    Justin, that makes a lot of sense. However, the point James raises in his piece is this: couldn’t committing locally be done by a non-distributed version control system, too? I don’t know the answer, but if you do, you should get over to James’ site and leave a comment. :)

  3. 003 // Justin Lilly // 07.28.2008 // 7:54 PM

    I’ll post this over to James’s site as well, but yes, its possible.. but much the same way that programming in PHP or working in Vista is possible… Its just not worth the effort when there are tools that do it better, faster and require 0 fiddling.

  4. 004 // Jeff Croft // 07.28.2008 // 9:27 PM

    I get that. The question then becomes this: why are people so excited about distributed version control if the killer features aren’t something that is directly related to de-centralization? In other words, the hype out to be over local commits, not over distribution. :)

  5. 005 // Trey Piepmeier // 07.31.2008 // 2:29 PM

    The reason I’m excited about Git is more about forking, branching, merging, and how dead simple it is to set up.

    Creating a Git repository with an existing project:

    cd project
    git init
    git add .
    git commit -m "first commit"
    

    And you don’t have to delete your original code and re-checkout like you do with Subversion.

    In terms of branching and merging, Git makes it dead simple to make big, stupid changes to your code without having to worry about messing things up. Just create a new branch, mess with it for a little bit, and if you can’t use it or you’re going down the wrong path—just delete the branch and you’re back where you started.

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