I'm looking for a volunteer
Wait a minute. Isn't this the part where everybody else in the line steps back and I look like the one who...
I wish I had the time as well, but with some neglected oxzs that need updating, a humbucker kit, and a vintage Gibson amp I've got stripped down to the circuit board I really don't think its realistic. I'm not sure I am that qualified anyway, I might be able to compile oolite for my own use but analyzing different package delivery systems to help decide which is the best to use to port oolite to multiple linux distros is certainly beyond the scope of my meager abilities.
Re: dependency hell, I'd respectfully disagree with those thinking that self-contained packages are the answer.
What is the answer then? I agree that it creates bloat and although I've never had issues with multiple versions existing in memory at the same time I certainly wouldn't deny its possible, but what other way is there?
As far as I can tell its the only way to allow developers of independent software the freedom to create the best software they can while allowing users the freedom to use that software with any OS (not just unix based).
I don't know much about Arch really but I am certain that the maintainers for debian or ubuntu would even consider packaging the existing script provided on oolite.org, for one thing they would be too worried about bugs that might be caused by having multiple versions of the same class existing in memory at the same time, although as I said I never had any problems running oolite or blender or pale moon or any of the other software I run this way.
I'd just like to throw in my defence of the general concept of the mainstream package management approach for the sake of balancing the discussion
I feel its a horribly repressive system that curses the developer to a basic set of restricted deps that cannot be customized or improved without the approval of some obscure community that accepts no input whatsoever from the common user or independent developers.
The real problem is not with independent developers who often struggle to find the time to do any actual development. Its the ones who constantly change the structure of these dependencies with complete disregard for any backwards or forward comparability. Cross platform compatibility is non existent even within the linux community itself, if the oolite devs wanted to create a package that would run specifically on Arch the would have to maintain a completely different package to run on Redhat and possibly another for Debian, and then there is windows and OSX.
How much extra work is it to maintain four or five different packages?
You are completely welcome to repackage oolite with all the latest deps on Arch and maintain it to keep it all up to date with Arch's rolling release cycle but I have no wish to curse the devs to such a miserable task. That would surely kill oolite.
Sorry this came off as a bit a a rant, nothing personal or anything, and really you shouldn't take me too seriously, I am quite aware of how little I really know.