> Sure they will. People who consciously install and test nightly builds
> tend to produce much better, and more importantly, more timely bugreports.
ROTFL. I run rawhide at home. Sometimes versions are pushed to rawhide hours before they get pushed upstream (because the rawhide packager is also the upstream main developer, and the rawhide process is faster than the upstream process).
That changes zip in the way problem reports are treated. Instead of ”your software is too old” you get:
– “I don't run a devel stack myself, please use old stable versions for everything but my own code and reproduce” (if you can't be bothered to run the early code of others, why do you insist users should run yours before you deign read their reports)
– “your software version is too new, we'll wait to see if there is still a problem later in stabler versions”
– “please retest or I close this report” months later (by someone who clearly never bothered investigating the first report)
Instead of “the decision has been taken a long time ago, it's too late to change it” you get “real users that do not run development distros will think otherwise” or “you'll see the awesomeness of our design once it has matured” responses.
And when the same problem hit more stable distros, and users do not find the design decisions awesome at all, and point out the very same problems than me months before, do they get a “we should have fixed that before, it was reported a long time ago” answer? No, they get exactly the excuses you just wrote.
Please climb down from your ivory tower.
(And I should also point out that some projects do take into account early bug reports, and they are also the same ones that take into account late bug reports, or reports against another distribution, and you never see them complaining loudly that distributions put an impenetrable wall between them and their users. They are awesome, even if they never make headlines discussing why they are entitled to ignore their user's feedback).