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From Sam Ruby <>
Subject Re: [VOTE] AJAX Toolkit Proposal - Updated
Date Mon, 16 Jan 2006 22:24:18 GMT
Noel J. Bergman wrote:
> Sam,
> As others have suggested, please attach the proposal.  Is this a vote
> on the proposal contained in
> Message-ID:
> <>
> posted by Ross Dargahi on January 11, 2006?

Yes, and I've copy and pasted it below.

I'd put it in the wiki, but that requires a name.  ;-)

> I believe that many of the complaints people have raised previously,
> or currently, can be addressed by renaming the thing to something
> that doesn't seem to co-opt a category (AJAX) for a project.  No one
> knows how the project will evolve, but at least initially, the
> codebase is a specific donation, although we cannot use that name
> because it is also the name of the donating company.
> As I understand it, there is a general consensus that:
> - we need to appropriately name the project.

Sure, let's name it after a region in the south pacific, as we all know 
that prevents the formation of an umbrella project (just having a little 
fun here...).

Perhaps Andy can suggest a cool Japanese word (or location name)?

> - recognize that it is just one toolkit, not an exclusive location
> for the general technology within the ASF.


> - the initial codebase is just that: initial.  Once the code is here,
> if people feel that the code sucks or the architecture sucks, or
> whatever else someone wants to complain about, all parties understood
> that the future direction of the architecture and code is, as is 
> everything at the ASF, subject to communal will.


> - Other contributors interested in AJAX, with or without existing
> codebases, are free to contribute, or to propose additional
> AJAX-related projects.


> I do see clear interest in AJAX.  Portals, MyFaces, and others (plus
> I know of an outside project or two that would be interested in
> contributing), can all make use of AJAX.  Whether or not *this*
> project provides anything useful to them will depend on who
> participates and where the project goes as it evolves.


- Sam Ruby


AJAX Toolkit Proposal

0. Rationale

While the term AJAX (Asynchronous Javascript and XML) has only recently
been coined, the underlying web standards and technologies (JavaScript
a.k.a. ECMAScript, DOM, XML, SOAP, and so on) have been around for
years. Although the term is used in a variety of ways, AJAX typically
describes techniques towards developing interactive applications on the
web client including asynchronous messaging, use of XML grammar in
client-side applications, incremental page updates, and improved user
interface controls. AJAX applications combine the rich UI experience of
programmed clients with the low-cost lifecycle management of web-based

AJAX has raised awareness of the high potential of web applications, it
has encouraged companies to adopt rich web-based interfaces over
traditional "fat" clients, and it has spawned development activity to
create toolkits and abstractions to make AJAX-style development easier
and more powerful. This is an important trend for open source. The
client itself can be composed entirely of open-source parts, such as
Mozilla's Firefox or KDE's Konqueror, and does not require any
particular operating system, helping to make a more level playing field
for all development. More importantly, AJAX is back-end agnostic as
transactions are done over HTTP. Keeping the client open forces vendors
to keep the communication channel open as well, and this can only
continue as long as the client technology keeps pace with proprietary
alternatives. The open, standards based communications channel is what
drives many technologies inside Apache, so success of the open client is
vital to Apache. The mission of this project is to encourage innovation
around enterprise-strength client runtimes and tools and build a
community which can select and nurture a select set which will be most
beneficial to the web.

0.1 Criteria


Apache was chosen for an incubator primarily because of the guidance the
community can provide.


The contributed work was inspired by open source development but needs a
strong and diverse community to validate its mission and carry it
forward. A primary objective of the project is to build a vibrant
community of users and active contributors.

Core Developers:

All of the initial committers are members of the Zimbra development team
s . All developers have worked on open source projects before and have
experience and understanding of open source principles.


The Zimbra AJAX Development Toolkit provides a rich client library,
similar in style to traditional object-oriented widget libraries like
Eclipse's SWT. This toolkit hides implementation details and browser
quirks and makes web development more accessible to the enterprise
developer. It provides

* User interface development
* Network communications (both synchronous and asynchronous)
* SOAP programming
* XML document creation and manipulation
* UI event handling and management

For further information, please see the Zimbra AjaxTK whitepaper:

0.2 Warning signs

Orphaned products:

The initial committers are users of this toolkit and have a long-term
interest in use and maintenance of the code.

Inexperience with open source:

Several of the commiters are very experienced in Open Source
environment. All efforts will be made to ensure that the work done and
momentum will be in strict adherence to open source guidelines.

Homogenous developers:

The current list of committers includes developers who are experienced
with working in a distributed environment, and with resolving technical

Reliance on salaried developers:

The initial set of committers are salaried developers. Through the
incubation process, more diversity will hopefully be achieved in many
aspects, including reliance on salaried developers.

No ties to other Apache products:

The initial codebase will be licensed under the Apache License 2.0.
While there are no direct build dependencies on other Apache projects,
the development of AJAX clients will often be driven by Apache
middleware and will have a positive impact on the open source movement
as described in the "Rationale" section.

A fascination with the Apache brand:

The committers are intent on developing a strong open source community.
We believe that the Apache Software Foundation's emphasis on community
development makes it the most suitable choice.

1. Scope of the subprojects

The Zimbra AjaxTK, as described in 0.1.

2. Identify the initial source from which the subprojects are to be

The Zimbra AjaxTK is available today in open source, and can be
downloaded at (See Zimbra Ajax Toolkit
(A snapshot of the AJAX toolkit code is also available via

2.1 External Dependencies of the project


3. Identify the ASF resources to be created

3.1 mailing list(s)

* ajaxtk-ppmc
* ajaxtk-dev
* ajaxtk-commits
* ajaxtk-user

3.2 Subversion repository

* [WWW]

3.3 Bugzilla


4. Identify the initial set of committers:

* Andrew Clark
* Conrad Damon
* Ross Dargahi
* Roland Schemers
* Parag Shah
* Greg Solovyev

5. Identify Apache sponsoring individual

We request that the Apache Incubator PMC sponsor the AJAX Toolkit
Framework as an
incubating project, with the eventual goal of graduation as a TLP. The
initial contributors feel the scope of the project doesn't clearly
overlap with any existing TLP, and is broad enough to justify eventual
TLP status.

Champion: Sam Ruby

Mentors: Andy Clark

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