This is fine if you have one single »OS version number« to point to. Good luck getting all the Linux distributions to standardise.
Why would you need that? Create a way to support your distribution, ignore all others, when few distributions are supported in such matter - they can synchronize if it'll make sense.
The systems you listed are at an advantage there because they get to control the complete platform.
And Fedora or Ubuntu don't have such control? Come on: Ubuntu have enough control to create completely alien interface not supported by any other project yet it can't create a working SDK?
And do note that on Windows many third-party applications (used to?) come with their own versions of important system libraries that they then put into the official library directory, possibly overwriting different custom versions of the same important system libraries that other applications put there earlier.
Just curious: when was the last time you've actually used Windows? Yes, once upon time this plactice (and Dll hell which it produced) was common. Today... most applications either don't do that at all or use official Microsoft's packages designed to support such use which work really well.
Windows may be »successful« (i.e., popular) but certainly not due to its sophisticated and foolproof ways of handling libraries.
Sophisticated? No. Foolproof? Yes. It's 100 times more robust then handling libraries under Linux. I mean from Joe Average POV who don't really distinguish between "package is referenced, but not available" and "I've installed Foo and now Bar does not work" failure modes.
OTOH, this is something that most of the mainstream Linux distributions get mostly right from an infrastructure POV (as I described for Debian).
Really? Take any third-party package and check how many of them support both lenny and wheezy. Compare with Windows where support for both XP and Windows 7 is still the norm (note that Windows XP is three times older then lenny).
Also note that they don't propose to do away with the traditional way of packaging stuff, which will still be used for the »base system«, so it's not as if this was an attempt to make simple-minded packaging »work for the whole OS«.
One step a time. Once you relegate most of the packages to "third-party" addons and stabilize your base OS you don't need RPM/DPKG anymore. But you can still use it to manage your OS - why not? It's your OS, you can use whatever you can as long as you are not trying to pretend that third-party developers need to deal with this stuff.
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