As to stabilizing stuff, that goes against the grain, at commercial sw companies but also especially for free sw projects.
The problem is that potential employers are especially impressed by the heroes who founded and started a project, not by the lowly drones who make it work and fix the bugs and write the docs and package it.
Therefore there is a strong incentive to reinvent whatever can be reinvented, to start a project that bears your name, without contributing tedious legwork to stabilize other projects, something that does not impress employers (even if 90% of their employees are into maintenance).
As a majestic example GKH and udev, where he managed to reinvent devfs only by creating something way more complicated and fragile, and by attacking devfs. But he succeeded, got to own an important project, and this launched him into a splendid career.
Starting and owning a major project results often enough in a cool job at RedHat, Google, IBM, etc., (90%+ of Linux kernel commits are by people employed by major vendors who want to drive the action according to their agenda) so there is a really strong incentive against stability.
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