In fact, that is the thing that bothers me most. I just hope he is bringing someone else along so that when he grows tired of all the work required, smxi and his other scripts can live on.
It's not up to me to provide a person to help, it's up to a person to provide themselves. I have no control over what other people do or don't do, if nobody helps, donates, or displays other signs of concrete material interest, then yes, of course, it grows less likely I'll spend the same types of time I've spent in the past, if people do display materialized manifestations of support/interest, then that is motivating, but i have very little say in making that happen or not, that's up to the people who would contribute in whatever way they find to do that.
smxi was significantly stabilized during the split with sidux, and doesn't require that much work unless I plan on adding a new feature, like the someday to come grub2 editing component, that will add Label handling to grub2, and maybe a simple grub boot image, and some other things I personally want.
LMDE/ikey exposed some nouveau handling issues in sgfxi that have been corrected, all core changes in sgfxi are VERY time consuming, boring, unfun, and require extensive testing, but overall things are very stable in that script, it has had literally multiple hundreds of thousands of uses over the years, and most major issues have been handled, as I note with amusement every time I read a new how to handle nvidia/fglrx thread, which then starts to run through the various random steps that must be run to ensure a reliable install/uninstall experience. But stuff always changes, fglrx always lags the cutting edge, so that's life.
Craigevil sometimes forgets just how good he's become at running Debian, and that might now and then color some of his comments, but in general he knows what he's talking about, especially when it comes to running firefox etc. For myself, for new users who don't know all the packages they see scroll by in a big upgrade, it's safer to run du's out of X, and it's also not possible to kick out of X to reinstall non free drivers, which are, as craigevil says, the actual main reason I keep smxi running out of X for regular users. But any absolute rule is hardly required, but speaking for myself, back in Kanotix days, I saw many users blow up their desktops, and that empirical experience, not theory, was why one of the first features of smxi was to kick users out of X, shut it down, etc, that was one reason sidux got its success rate of normal but fairly smart people being able to run sid with some success. Not something I'd suggest by the way to most people, testing is easier in every way, especially if a fix repo is attached to it where you can stick stuff that never makes it into testing from sid.
Unlike too many strict debian guys, craig always retains an open mind about the stuff he uses, ie, he thinks for himself, and does what he likes and finds that works, like me, for example, he doesn't use the buggy and problematic iceweasel, but uses firefox instead, the real one. That's another feature I'll add to smxi one day, a direct mozilla group firefox downloader/installer, but it's a few steps and I'm lazy, heh.
With all this said, however, you have to keep in mind all of us were severely burned by our sidux experience, and we've all gotten somewhat passionately disgusted with pretty much everything involved in that convoluted world. I'll leave it at that because that mess is just everything that is bad about foss groupthink, but that's a large part of what lies behind craig's annoyance.
For the record, I use aptitude for all my systems because it's slightly better able to handle the complex scenarios I ask apt to handle, but there's no perfection.
However, I'll say this, lmde is closer to the spirit of what debian really is than that ATS nonsense, the true spirit of free software, as RMS said so well, lies in the freedom of the user to do what they want with their systems. ATS and those guys seem unable to grasp such principles, which is why their users have almost all left them behind, which is only right.
smxi, just fyi, has complete separate upgrade handling for stable/testing/sid, each has a back end that can handle different fixes, different live warnings, holds, etc, so if someone from lmde wants to learn about that come to irc.oftc.net (that's where #smxi is, not the url posted I think above)