source: doc/FAQ @ b7d3cc34

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1Frequently Asked Questions about BitlBee
4Well, maybe not exactly "Frequently", but definitely "Asked" ... mostly by
5the developers :-)
7Q: WTH were you guys on when you thought of that _weird_ name?
8A: Though we live in The Netherlands and one of us even lives in Amsterdam,
9   we're not on drugs ... most of the time.
11Q: Okay, so the cops are so evil there, you can't even admit the truth, but
12   WTH does BitlBee mean then?
13A: There are a few explanations. But the most symbolical goes like: the two
14   colors of the bee symbolize the two worlds betwee which the Bee flies. On
15   the one hand there's the IM-networks, on the other is IRC.
17   Truth be told, it's absolute nonsense. The biggest nutcase in the
18   development team just played around with words for half an hour or so.
19   BitlBee was the result. We liked it, we kept it. We lovingly shorten it
20   to "the Bee" or even "het Bijtje" (Dutch for "the little Bee") sometimes.
22Q: What is 'root' doing in my control channel? I didn't start the Bee as
23   root.
24A: 'root' is just the name for the most powerful user in BitlBee. Just like
25   in the system, it is root who is the ... eh ... root of the
26   functionality. Luckily, in BitlBee, root follows your orders (mostly), so
27   no BOFHs there.
29   We get some complaints from time to time that 'root' is a confusing name.
30   Because of that name, some package maintainers have renamed root to, for
31   example, BitlBee. We recognize that some people see that need. If the
32   package maintainer hasn't renamed root, you can do this yourself with the
33   'rename' command.
35   The name root is not likely to change in the 'official' releases, though.
36   We find the metaphor of root correct and feel that there is no important
37   (security threatening) reason to change this non-creative piece of
38   artistic creativity.
40Q: Why is there no mailing list/CVS/<insert your favourite development tool
41   here>?
42A: Short answer: we don't need it.
44   Longer answer: and we're not completely convinced of their merits.
46   Long answer: we currently use some shell scripts which make sure all
47   developers' copies are in sync with Wilmer's master copy. These shell
48   scripts also produce development "releases" and packages, as well as
49   stick them on a http-server. Patches are sent to Wilmer who decides
50   whether or not a patch should be applied and if it may need some
51   additional changes. This has the consistency advantage of a one-person
52   project while having the capacity of more people available. The system
53   works and we are kind of attached to it.
55Q: When is $random_feature going to be implemented?
56A: Please do consult doc/TODO (preferably in a development snapshot, which
57   is more up-to-date than a TODO in a release version) before asking.
58   Please also check the documentation. You'd not be the first one to request
59   a feature which already exists!
61   If your fabulous feature seems not to be requested before, just join
62   #bitlbee on and tell us the news.
64   If your feature request is already in the TODO list, of course you can
65   still request it again/make us know that you'd like to see the feature as
66   well. But when the feature is in the "post-1.0" list, it's probably not
67   going to help. Most of the features in this list are low-priority because
68   we (the developers) don't need (or even want) them. (File transfers are a
69   good example here.)
70   Hence, they'll only be implemented when we really got too much spare
71   time. Obviously, if you're willing to help (i.e. submit a patch), you're
72   always welcome.
74Q: The messages I send and/or receive look weird. I see weird characters and
75   annoying HTML codes. Or, BitlBee does evil things when I send messages with
76   non-ASCII characters!
77A: You probably have to change some settings. To get rid of HTML in messages,
78   see "help set html". If you seem to have problems with your charset, see
79   "help set charset".
81Q: Is BitlBee forked from Gaim?
82A: BitlBee 0.7 was, sort-of. It contained a lot of code from Gaim 0.58
83   (mainly the IM-code), although heavily modified, to make it work better
84   with BitlBee. We were planning to keep BitlBee up-to-date with later Gaim
85   versions, but this turned out to be very time-consuming because the API
86   changed a lot, and we don't have the time to keep up with those changes
87   all the time.
89   These days, we replaced the Yahoo! code with libyahoo2 (which is a
90   separate Yahoo! module. It's derived from Gaim, but separately
91   maintained) and wrote our own MSN module. More modules are probably going
92   to be changed, so in the near future, the API might be the only thing
93   left from Gaim.
95Q: What's that Gaim doing in BitlBee error messages and my Jabber resource?
96A: Ah, well, as you probably know we use some of Gaim's IM-modules, and we
97   don't think it's worth our time to do a search-and-replace over the whole
98   source to get rid of every reference to Gaim. In fact, we don't want to,
99   since we don't want to pretend we wrote all that code.
101   About Jabber: If you want a different resource string, you can set it
102   when logging in by appending it to your Jabber ID, like:
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