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    It was good to see that this was not the usual “Linux users are entitled” screed I’ve heard in gamedev articles before:

    That’s right, an average Linux player will get you 650% more bug reports. A lot of extra work for just 5.8% of extra units, right?

    Wrong. Bugs exist whenever you know about them, or not.

    Do you know how many of these 400 bug reports were actually platform-specific? 3. Literally only 3 things were problems that came out just on Linux. The rest of them were affecting everyone - the thing is, the Linux community is exceptionally well trained in reporting bugs. That is just the open-source way. This 5.8% of players found 38% of all the bugs that affected everyone. Just like having your own 700-person strong QA team. That was not 38% extra work for me, that was just free QA!

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      It was good to see that this was not the usual “Linux users are entitled” screed I’ve heard in gamedev articles before:

      I was gonna guess “differences between OSes matter a lot more to gamedev than you’d think” and was pleasantly surprised.

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      The title of this article is deceiving. I like the twist and the happy ending.

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        It had the lesson I expected should be learned from the title but I was pleasantly surprised that it actually was. This is a big part of my argument for supporting niche platforms. The more niche an open source platform, the higher the ratio of developers to users. I don’t use Haiku and I will probably never use Haiku. I’d have been very excited by it if it were in its current state 20 years ago but now it feels too little, too late. I am; however, super happy to get patches to my projects that add Haiku support because, in my experience, 100% of Haiku users are experienced developers and so the return on investment in terms of valuable contributions relative to the cost of maintaining the Haiku support if probably higher than for any other OS. I’ve had one very subtle bug in one project exposed because it deterministically triggered on Haiku but only happened on Linux in specific and quite rare conditions. We’d probably never (or, at least, not without hundreds of hours of hunting) have found it on Linux and just had occasional crashes making everyone unhappy, but on Haiku it triggered sufficiently reliably that an external contributor was able to find the root cause and file a bug report.

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          This reminded me of Theo talking about why OpenBSD keeps old platforms around

          On a regular basis, we find real and serious bugs which affect all platforms, but they are incidentally made visible on one of the platforms we run, following that they are fixed. It is a harsh reality which static and dynamic analysis tools have not yet resolved.

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        While the headline surprises nobody, a takeaway from the conclusion is that bug reports are valuable.

        But not every product has a bug tracker. Is this a bit underappreciated in commercial software? Especially, I want to say that as a user, it goes just as much the other way: Being able to write a good old bug report is a thing to appreciate about the open source development model.

        A recent example from my own experience: Where is Microsoft’s bug tracker? I was without Teams for Linux for one month, at great personal cost, because Microsoft doesn’t have a bug tracker. Well, Teams in the browser actually has a “Help” menu to report bugs. Did that; didn’t get any feedback. As a result, I didn’t get the help I needed, and I couldn’t provide any help either. Only after Microsoft found out about it themselves could I get it working again. While I’m fond of the saying that software is like sex – it is best when it is free, if there is one thing that makes me hate commercial software, it is a helpless experience. Let’s not make this an aspect of it!