----- Original Message ----- From: "Craig R. McClanahan" <[EMAIL PROTECTED]> To: "Jakarta General List" <[EMAIL PROTECTED]>; "Harish Krishnaswamy" <[EMAIL PROTECTED]> Cc: "Jakarta General List" <[EMAIL PROTECTED]> Sent: Thursday, December 18, 2003 10:26 PM Subject: Re: Jakarta: Confederation or Single Project?
> Quoting Harish Krishnaswamy <[EMAIL PROTECTED]>: > > > Could someone please explain the motivation behind the creation of Jakarta > > and how it got to where > > it is today? May be that would help answer some of the questions we have? > > > > -Harish > > > > These comments are going to be (like anyone's would be) colored by my own > personal experiences during the development of Jakarta -- including my > ignorance of a lot of the details in subprojects that I'm not an active > participant. But it should give you a little feel for the history of the > place. > > The gist of the creation of Jakarta was around three facts: > > * Apache wasn't an incorporated entity (this is about > four years ago now), but wanted to be -- and was > formally becoming the Apache Software Foundation. > > * Apache had a project to build a servlet container > (Apache JServ) at a website called "java.apache.org" > which created a trademark-use issue around "java". > (I was a committer on Apache JServ, which is how I > originally got involved in open source software.) > > * Sun wanted to contribute, and Apache wanted to accept, > the source code for the servlet and JSP implementation > called the "Java Servlet Development Kit", and later > published by Apache as Tomcat 3.0. > > Just as an item of slight historical interest, "Jakarta" was the name of the > conference room at Sun where a lot of the early discussions took place. > > An organizational framework to focus on developing "open source server side Java > stuff" was created to host these initiatives, and other related subprojects got > proposed and added to the mix. As the number of Jakarta committers scaled from > the original 10 or so to where we are today (hundreds), the original charter > has > become, umm, somewhat stretched. > > Ironically, it didn't take long at all for the scope of that original charter to > get exceeded, because one of the little nuggets of code that was included in > the > original Tomcat contribution was a pure-Java build tool (to replace "make") > called "Ant" ... > > As more and more subprojects were added, there were some inevitable cases of > overlapping scope, and overlapping implementations of the same ideas. One of > the best things we've done (IMHO) was purposely creating a subproject > (jakarta-commons) focused on making "small, focused, reusable" packages, and > encouraging the larger projects to use them. Not only has this been successful > within Jakarta -- there's been quite a lot of cross-fertilization among the web > app frameworks, for example -- it's also created a fairly rich library of > funcational packages that are widely used elsewhere. But one could really > argue whether something like Commons Digester (originally designed as an > easy-to-use tool to parse XML configuration files) really fit the Jakarta > charter. > > Over time, there have been more than a few, err, "voluminous" discussions about > how to scale up Jakarta from an organizational perspective, and whether the > fundamental organizing principle was still the correct one. Does a focus on > server side stuff exclude what could be some really interesting open source > projects? Does a focus on Java make sense when just across the website there > are things like xml.apache.org that are focused on a technology, not on an > implementation language? Does it make sense to have "community" type projects > that host individual software package projects at all? > > Coupled with these increasing concerns (at the ASF board level) about the > ability of any oversight group (a responsibility delegated to PMCs in the ASF > organizational structure), several original Jakarta subprojects (or even > sub-sub-projects in some cases) like Ant, Maven, and James decided to become > top level projects (TLPs) of their own -- this takes making a formal proposal > to the ASF Board that gets accepted, and the formation of a PMC for that > project. Those sorts of discussions continue to this day. > > Somewhat separately, but overlapping in time, it became clear that there needed > to be a way to incorporate new developer communities (and in some cases > existing codebases that were being contributed) into Apache. The developers > (if they weren't Apache committers already) needed to learn "the Apache way" to > do things. The code (if any) needed to be vetted for appropriate contributor > agreements to protect both the ASF and those that rely on our code. Thus, the > incubator project was created as a place for these things to happen. It is > also actively evolving. > > <personal-view> > To a large extent, the stresses that are felt as the ASF grows are actually a > result of our success, and should not be looked at as signs of failure. I > remember a statement from a consultant that one of my employers brought in > along the way to deal with some important decisions when we had no consensus at > all: > > "The absence of stress is death." > > So, here's to having some more stress! :-) > </personal-view> > +1 (non-binding :) > Craig > > > --------------------------------------------------------------------- > To unsubscribe, e-mail: [EMAIL PROTECTED] > For additional commands, e-mail: [EMAIL PROTECTED] > >
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