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So using those two terms in our context, we will rarely rebase unless we have long running experiments underway or if we find we just branched for release way too early and need to go at it again. And we'll use promotion when we have a release branch taking emergency, last-minute patches that we want to promote back to the trunk for ongoing development.
If you want cool pictures and graphs, [this PDF|^SCMBranchingModels.pdf] shows the model well. We are using the "branch by purpose" model. Or at least something close to that. We branch later than the paper describes as they branch near feature-complete or some time earlier than "done."