incubator-general mailing list archives

Site index · List index
Message view « Date » · « Thread »
Top « Date » · « Thread »
From Ian Holsman <>
Subject Re: Fwd: Cassandra Open Source Hullabaloo / Project Management Proposal
Date Sun, 16 Nov 2008 01:40:41 GMT wrote:
> Mr. Ian Holsman
> So let me get this straight you want to hijack the project from the
> original developers ,
> so that you can run it at a larger scale in YOUR company ??

In a nutshell yes.

The original developers have not been present on the list for at least a 
month, where they answered 1-2 questions.

The 'patches' and contribution area of the project has been little 
better than dead since july. People have contributed patches, had them 
integrated into the original source, only to have them disappear in the 
next code that was 'thrown over' the wall from facebook. (one of the 
core developers words not mine).

The last time we have seen any code on the project was in September. The 
have promised something 'coming soon' which will have features facebook 
thinks is important. This is without any real consultation done to the 
others on the list about those features.

So overall I wouldn't call the project healthy, regardless of what the 
original intentions were. I had approached Avinash, about this over the 
last couple of months, where I heard that there was some internal issues 
at facebook that had prevented them working on it. This is no 'bomb' 
coming out of nowhere. They chose to ignore the message, and the natural 
outcome of this.

I was approached by some other developers who were equally as frustrated 
by this as I was. They had already forked the code and had started their 
own development trees which had integrated the patches they wanted and 
moved on with their own work.

I didn't like the direction I was seeing that heading (lots of people 
working on their own) so I proposed we put this forth as a incubator 
project so that the disparate developers can work on this together. They 
agreed so I volunteered to write the proposal and get the thing working.

> So these are the ethics that you have learnt after being associated
> with many so called cool open source projects,  why should anyone put
> their blood and sweat into open source if scavengers like you are
> circling the skies of open source.

very poetic.

I am doing this to save the technology from what I feel will be it's own 
demise. you are free to call me a 'scavenger' if you wish, as I am 
trying to take the best bits of a dead project and do something useful 
with it.

We could have just grabbed the idea (or go back to the original dynamo 
idea that it was built from) and started from scratch, would that be 
better than reusing the hard work already done?

I don't bear any ill will towards the developers themselves, but to be 
honest I think they are in between a rock and a hard place. I think they 
would like to contribute more, but something inside their company is 
holding them back, and maybe they don't have the full support of their 
management.  Maybe they can use this proposal to help them get more time 
to devote to the project so a fork might not be necessary, maybe it will 
stop facebook from contributing other projects in the future. I don't 
know. But right now I'm interested in reviving this project.

At the moment this is just a proposal. The choice on whether the fork 
will be accepted into incubation will be made by developers like 
yourself, and they will use their own ethics and judgement on what is 

but to reiterate.
- no code in at least 3 months.
- patches from the community not accepted, or accepted and vanished in 
the 'development' code branch
- decisions done behind closed doors, with little or no interaction with 
the community
- little or no communication by the developers over the last month or two
- code and features being 'thrown' to the open source community.

These are my reasons for a fork.

Ian Holsman.

> On Nov 15, 2:05 pm, Ian Holsman <> wrote:
>> John Ryan wrote:
>>> Here is a good suggestion from Jesse that Avinash forwarded to me.
>> Hi John.
>> Firstly  the name change was done out of respect, and to make sure that
>> people don't get confused if/when the original cassandra becomes viable.
>> There was no intention to not to acknowledge the people and company that
>> originally donated the code. Have a look at the various graduated apache
>> projects for evidence of that.
>> Secondly if you guys think this proposal will work, go for it. But to
>> me, I don't see how this addresses any of the fundamental problems
>> occurring here.
>> The main thing you need (imho) for a successful open source project is
>> ownership by the community of all aspects of the project so that it can
>> survive companies pulling out when their needs change.
>> What is being proposed here is that another group (SCADS in this case)
>> takes control of the open source side of  a project, with the promise
>> that they will merge the next code dump if it happens. In my eyes this
>> still puts the non-facebook people into a 2nd class citizen role. It
>> still has the core issue that there are 2 codebases, and major design
>> changes will happen behind closed doors, like they are currently
>> happening today. If/When Avinash/Prashant get a new manager, get a new
>> role in another group, they leave facebook, facebook gets bought, or
>> facebook goes under (they still aren't revenue positive) then we would
>> be without the only 2 people who know the system. I don't see this
>> changing with the proposal below.
>> and John on a personal note, I have no interest in having my name
>> associated with yet another cool technology. My name is associated with
>> way too many as it is. My main interest is to be able to use this at my
>> work (which would be at a scale larger than facebook's).
>> Regards
>> Ian
>> ps. I'm mailing the proposal in about 10m.. Your also welcome to voice
>> your concerns there as well.
>>> ---------- Forwarded message ----------
>>> From: *Jesse Trutna* <
>>> <>>
>>> Date: Nov 15, 2008 5:24 AM
>>> Subject: Cassandra Open Source Hullabaloo / Project Management Proposal
>>> To: Avinash Lakshman <
>>> <>>, Prashant Malik <
>>> <>>
>>> Blech, politics.
>>> I've been following a bit of the hubbabaloo at the google-code site,
>>> thought maybe I could offer a solution...  Basically, it seems like
>>> the main complaint is that there isn't enough interaction from you
>>> guys, but you don't really have the time to be packaging things up all
>>> the time for the community.  At the same time, we on the SCADS team
>>> would love to get more hands on the problem, which is something the
>>> open-source community can provide.  I can't speak for the whole team,
>>> but in order not to lose that community I'd be willing to do the
>>> community interaction - google code babysitting, if that'd make things
>>> easier on you guys.  I'd probably bring in some of the OSS guys, try
>>> to build enough momentum around the project so that when the next big
>>> code release comes out there's enough motivation to merge with the new
>>> changes.  I.e., let the community play around with this version, built
>>> tools, etc until you guys are ready with the next one.
>>> Or, if you guys want to maintain control of that repository, perhaps a
>>> pseudo-sanctioned fork, a.k.a "Berkeley Cassandra" that gives credit
>>> were credits is due.  The existing site could point people to the
>>> academic version until the next revision of the your work comes out.
>>>  At that point we'd either merge or have have two related main
>>> branches, the Facebook version and the academic/oss version with
>>> hopefully some productive cross-germination between them.
>>> It just seems like what's going to happen is the community is going to
>>> fork to a new project with a new name, which doesn't properly credit
>>> you guys for all the hard work you've done or Facebook for releasing
>>> it.  Then, down the pipe, you'll release the next version and we'll
>>> have two versions: One that's got momentum and has all the operational
>>> burrs worked out (which is what the OSS community is good at) and the
>>> version with a bunch of powerful, new features that works really well
>>> (as long as your using it for Facebooks use cases on a similar
>>> infrastructure.) i.e. broad and shallow vs narrow and deep.
>>> Anyway, let me know what you think, hopefully things won't boil out of
>>> control in the mean time.  :)
>>> Thanks,
>>> Jesse Trutna
> --~--~---------~--~----~------------~-------~--~----~
> You received this message because you are subscribed to the Google Groups "Cassandra
Developers" group.
> To post to this group, send email to
> To unsubscribe from this group, send email to
> For more options, visit this group at
> -~----------~----~----~----~------~----~------~--~---

To unsubscribe, e-mail:
For additional commands, e-mail:

View raw message