[Bitcoin-development] Random order for clients page

Mike Hearn mike at plan99.net
Mon Jul 9 22:37:07 UTC 2012

> I strongly agree, but this is *why* I suggested moving it to the wiki. I
> recently had to choose an XMPP client and I looked on xmpp.org - after a
> frustrating experience with their listing [1]

Probably because their listing is even more useless than any of the
proposals that were presented here. Thank goodness it didn't end up
like that. Their table doesn't even attempt to list features or
differentiating aspects of each client.

I think the XMPP guys have pretty much given up on directly marketing
the system to end users.

> - more up-to-date (anyone can update them)

Fortunately reasonable clients don't appear/disappear/change that often.

> - more in touch with users:

I think by "users" you mean, geeks who understand wiki syntax. Because
that's what it'll end up trending towards. I don't believe a wiki
would reflect the needs of your average person. It's still better to
have these arguments here and try to find a user-focussed consensus
than hope one will converge from a wiki.

> If you want to see "the result of
> internal politics", the current client page is a good example. We
> couldn't agree on the columns for a feature matrix, so now we just have
> walls of text.

Inability to agree on columns isn't why the page looks like that. I
know because I'm the one who argued for the current design.

It looks like that because feature matrices aren't especially helpful
for newbies to make a decision, especially when the "features" in
question were often things like how they handled the block chain or
which protocol standards they support, ie, things only of interest to

It's much easier to communicate the differences to people with a short
piece of text, and maybe if there is no obvious way to explain why
you'd want to use a given client, that's a good sign it's not worth
listing there. Otherwise you end up like xmpp.org.

> Some of the options that are de-facto the most popular
> with users like BlockChain.info or just using your MtGox account are not
> mentioned at all.

It's true that bitcoin.org needs to be conservative. That said, I'd
like there to be sections for them too, actually. I agree that risk
isn't purely about how it's implemented and that whilst we might like
to push particular ideologies around protocols or code licensing, that
isn't especially relevant to end users who have different priorities.
Track record counts for a lot as well.

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