On Jan 6, 12:49 pm, James Hargreaves <james.hargrea...@gmail.com>
> Hello,
> I note that the prototype libraries (available on prototypejs.org)
> have not been updated since November 2010. Indeed, nothing much seems
> to have been updated on the site since around then.
> Is prototype still an active project?
> Thanks
> Jay

(Caveat: I'm not a member of the Prototype team and don't speak for
them. My view of the project is from the outside, and so may be
flawed. I was a bit involved with the project briefly, doing a fair
bit of missing documentation with an eye toward contributing on the
code front as well, but stepped away from it for various reasons a
couple of years ago.)

> Is prototype still an active project?

It depends on your perspective. Unlike some other libraries, Prototype
has no corporate sponsor; no one is paid to work on it. There's been
no visible activity on the project since November 2010 (the last
release, and last blog entry). The previous version was 14 months
earlier (September 2009). There are 105 outstanding bug reports,
including some that are quite straightforward to fix (such as
Prototype overwriting any native implementation of `Array#filter` and
such; issue #317).

Most of the people who contributed to the project in the past are not
currently doing so; as far as I'm aware, only Andrew Dupont (the
project lead) is even nominally on the Prototype team at this point,
and he's busy with other things. Here's what Andrew had to say the
last time this came up, about three months ago:

My take-away here is that the project is essentially inactive -- after
all, Andrew can't be expected to do all the work himself! He has a job
and a mortgage and a life like the rest of us. But it could be
reactivated quite quickly, really, if someone with some significant
time available, and the necessary credentials to make Andrew think it
made sense, stepped up and offered to take the reins alongside him.
Ideally, someone or ones working for a company or companies with a
significant Prototype investment that want to see the library continue
and are happy to pay their engineers to work on it a bit rather than
paying them to replace it with something else -- e.g., companies
"giving back" to the project with actual paid developer time. It
wouldn't take much. The project needs one person with a reasonable
time commitment per week (say, 4-8 hours/week) to co-chair with
Andrew, and then if (say) five of the companies that use Prototype
could offer two hours of a developer's time per week triaging bug
reports, fixing bugs, etc., that would make a _massive_ difference to
the project. Hopefully that new co-chair could also look at some of
the longer-term stuff (like using element wrappers rather than DOM
element augmentation, which I know was high on Andrew's to do list).

T.J. Crowder
Independent Software Engineer
tj / crowder software / com
www / crowder software / com

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