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Some feedback from ApacheCon

From: Leo Simons
Subject: Some feedback from ApacheCon
Date: Sat, 23 Jul 2005 13:16:02 +0200
User-agent: Microsoft-Entourage/

Hi gang!

Mark Wielaard wrote on harmony-dev:
> Some of the people around the GNU Classpath projects really don't
> feel that they are part of Harmony. And I do try to bring them in. But
> when some of these people tried to get a feeling how/what people thought
> about what they have been working on for the last few years there wasn't
> any real technical feedback.


Non-technical feedback:

I gave a "lighting lottery talk" at ApacheCon EU that pointed out some of
the stuff that can be done with the free java stuff right now (like natively
compiling eclipse). There were more than a few people that couldn't quite
believe it. When I mentioned lines of code being written around here, lines
of code being written/day, etc etc, there were some spontaneous "ooh"s and

Several people came up to me later saying they failed to get stuff running.
And honesty, it ain't so easy to figure out five-line configure statements
if you're used to drag-and-dropping a file into your applications folder and
being done with it (I'm a mac user). If you guys get your stuff out into
those linux distros (and into DarwinPorts please!) and eclipse and ant are
by default configured to use it then there will be more people using it. To

Technical feedback:

I don't know much about VMs. I haven't got much useful feedback to give.
Most of the java developers out there in the open source world don't. We
just use them. Most java developers are on average happy enough with sun's
stuff (though bea's is often considered better), more importantly are very
*used* to it being there and doing what it does.

That said, I almost never run any of sun's CLI tools. I just use Ant, or
Maven. I've been told over 90% of the java developers out there use Ant as
their build tool of choice. That percentage is not very likely to go down.
So integrating tightly with ant is *very* important.


Do remember there is an Apache Top-Level Project dedicated in part to
getting you guys a certain kind of feedback, and we finally got things back
up and running:

I consider the free java community the second-most important user of Gump
(first one is Apache itself :-)) and quite a bit of our development time is
going into making sure the next version of gump will be even more useful for
projects like classpath, kaffe, ...

Licensing feedback:

The Apache License and the GPL are not compatible. (It seems we are getting
closer to figuring out in what sense the Apache License and the LGPL are
compatible, stay tuned.)

Apache atm considers fixing this mess so important that it is on the top of
the list for our legal team (actually, it is slots 1 *and* 2). We've got a
whole bunch of people spending a lot of their time on all sides (usually
spare Sunday evenings and the like) trying to bridge the licensing divide in
the java world. And the thing that drives this effort atm is that Apache
wants to use and distribute and contribute to projects like classpath.

I hope this helps.



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