I’ve been using Atom as my primary editor for a few months, and I enjoy using it for the most part. Before that I used VS Code for almost a year.
I decided to go back to Atom because I want to support a truly open source editor (as far as I know, it’s open source through and through). Also, I have a more powerful laptop so I don’t notice the additional demands on resources, compared to VS Code.
I noticed a silly bug where the cursor doesn’t move to the correct position when inserting a comment using
/. I opened an issue on GitHub (#17199) after noticing that a previous, similar, issue (#4784) was marked as stale in September 2017, and closed.
My issue was closed because it was marked as a duplicate of #4784 and I was given the following feedback:
Because we treat our issues list as the Atom team’s backlog, we close duplicates to focus our work and not have to touch the same chunk of code for the same reason multiple times. This is also why we may mark something as duplicate that isn’t an exact duplicate but is closely related.
This feedback, in itself, is good feedback. It explains why duplicate issues are closed. It’s a reasonable approach to take.
My concern is more that the “original” issue went stale in September 2017 after being reported in December 2014. This issue just isn’t being dealt with, and it looks like it won’t be dealt with.
Granted, this bug isn’t exactly mission critical, and I manage to do what I need to do with it manifesting. At the same time, it leaves me wondering if ignoring these little bugs bodes ill for Atom going forward?
If I had the knowledge, I’d be happy to work in this and fix the issue. I wouldn’t even know where to begin to address it so I’m reliant on the developers who do work on these issues.
While Atom is improving, for sure, not addressing these smaller issues is worrying. For one thing, it’s a fix that could save a noticeable amount of time and keystrokes. It also reminds me of the policing policy that was implemented in New York at one point. I think it was called “Broken Windows”, or something like that.
The idea is that the police wouldn’t even tolerate small issues. They’d address everything and, in the process, improved policing across the board. I’m not familiar with what it takes to maintain something like Atom but it seems to me that adopting a similar approach would improve Atom overall.