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GNU Task List

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1. About the GNU Task List

If you did not obtain this file directly from the GNU project and recently, please check for a newer version. You can ftp the task list from any GNU FTP host in directory `/pub/gnu/tasks/'. The task list is available there in several different formats: `tasks.text', `tasks.texi', `tasks.info', and `tasks.dvi'. The GNU HURD task list is also there in file `tasks.hurd'. The task list is also available on the GNU World Wide Web server: http://www.gnu.org/prep/tasks_toc.html.

If you start working steadily on a project, please let gvc@gnu.org know. We might have information that could help you; we'd also like to send you the GNU coding standards.

Because of the natural tendency for most volunteers to write programming tools or programming languages, we have a comparative shortage of applications useful for non-programmer users. Therefore, we ask you to consider writing such a program.

Typically, a new program that does a completely new job advances the GNU project, and the free software community, more than an improvement to an existing program.

Typically, new features or new programs advance the free software community more, in the long run, than porting existing programs. One reason is that portable new features and programs benefit people on many platforms, not just one. At the same time, there tend to be many volunteers for porting--so your help will be more valuable in other areas, where volunteers are more scarce.

Typically, it is more useful to extend a program in functionality than to improve performance. Users who use the new functionality will appreciate it very much, if they use it; but even when they benefit from a performance improvement, they may not consider it very important.

Finally, if you think of an important job that free software cannot solve yet that is typically solved by proprietary software, please send a short description of that job to tasks@gnu.org so that we can add it to this task list.


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