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From "Adam Murdoch" <>
Subject Time for an official Ant 2 tree? (was Ant 1.9 & Task Packaging)
Date Tue, 22 Jan 2002 01:25:43 GMT

> -----Original Message-----
> From: Tim Dawson []
> Sent: Tuesday, 22 January 2002 7:38 AM
> To:
> Subject: Ant 1.9 & Task Packaging
> I think we should consider Ant2 to be a brand new project, similar to what
> Xerces, Xalan, and Cocoon have done. Trying to migrate the Ant1.x
> code base,
> IMHO, has really held Ant2 back. We've been talking about it for
> over a year
> now, it seems.

The thing that is *really* holding back Ant 2 is that there is no 'official'
Ant 2 source tree.  It seems that there are plenty of people waiting around
for Ant 2 to 'start'.  Creating an Ant 2 source tree - even if it is a
straight-up copy of the Ant 1.x tree - will give people an obvious and
focused place to start helping out.

There's been heaps of excellent ideas discussed on this list, but there's
nowhere for people to try them out to see how they work against the current
set of tasks, or to share them with other developers, or to see how they
interact with other ideas.  Sure, some the concepts are still a bit hazy,
but there are plenty of ideas that are ready to start coding up, or that are
stalled because there's nowhere to do proof-of-concept work.

Nor is there anywhere for the casual developer to jump in and help out with
patches, or bite-sized features.

Granted, there *are* places where people can work on Ant 2, but its hard to
figure out where and what.  E.g. What's proposal/myrmidon all about?  or
proposal/mutant?  Or take the 1.9 action list - *where* do I work on that?

What I'd like to propose is that the committers decide (by a vote, I guess)

1. Is is time to start an official Ant 2 source tree?

I don't think there's any doubt that we need a separate tree, the question
is whether now is the time to start one.

2. If so, what code base should be used?  A tricky one, but it has to be
tackled eventually.

Seems like we have at least 4 options:

1. Copy the Ant 1.5 tree and start refactoring.

2. Start from scratch.

3. Adopt Myrmidon as the official Ant 2 proposal.

4. Adopt Mutant as the official Ant 2 proposal.

Option 1 isn't a bad one.  It's a familar code base for everyone.

Option 2 is a non-starter - it is almost always quicker to refactor than

Option 3 is my favourite.  It's basically option 1, but many months down the
refactoring path.  I recommend people check Myrmidon out.  There's a
daunting amount of code there - but keep in mind that a huge chunk of it is
simply a copy of Ant 1, which, while heavily refactored, is still very
recognisable.  The task API isn't too different from Ant 1; Start with
AbstractTask and TaskContext (the replacements for Task and Project), or
your favourite task, and go from there.

Option 4 I can't comment on - though I am looking forward to checking it
out.  Perhaps there will be an option 5 - merge Mutant and Myrmidon and
adopt that as the official Ant 2 proposal.

Of course, Ant 2 isn't going to be as simple as just copying across a bunch
of source and saying "go at it".  But once we have a starting point (that
is, code), we can plan from there.  A step at a time.

I can't vote, but +10000 for an Ant 2 tree, and at least the same for
adopting myrmidon.


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