31 Jan 2002 blinker   » (Observer)

I've been struggling to keep up with the traffic on Ant- Dev. I need a better mail reader than Outlook Express. I'd like to be reading my mail on the laptop's Linux setup, but for the most part my Java development happens under Win2K so it probably makes more sense to download Eudora or something.

Anyway, there's a lot of interesting discussion on Ant-Dev. I'm getting a better sense of what's happening with the proposals for Ant 2. Observations so far:

  1. If I submit a patch, I can't expect to see it in the nightly builds right away (or even anytime soon). I may be eager to see it in a release, but that doesn't make it a top priority.
  2. Adhering to coding standards is critical. I shouldn't even think of contributing anything until I've at least read the standards a few times.
  3. Reaching consensus via e-mail is difficult. I've been thinking about how some of the e-mail discussions might have gone differently if the participants had all been in the same room. The voting system used by the Jakarta projects seems to do a pretty good job of moving things along, but voting only helps if you can call for a vote on the right question.
  4. Backwards compatibility is hard.
  5. Mailing list discussion makes much more sense when you're really familiar with the source code. I downloaded the entire Ant tree to my laptop last night so that I can start reading through it in my copious free time. I've already worked with the Task stuff, so I'm not starting from nothing.

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