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From James Duncan Davidson <>
Subject Re: Ant Principles
Date Wed, 19 Apr 2000 07:59:41 GMT

> Good idea - good work!

Thanks. It's a start. It's quite obvious to me that I'm too freaking
busy to code up stuff, but at the very least I can help to cook up a
psuedo-spec that describes how ant should work.

> As others pointed out, single declaration of properties is also preferred on
> my part. In addition to other proposal, properties could be specified like
> the system properties, maybe using a different option:
> ant projectfile.xml -Pfoo=bar -Pbaz=bop [target]
> "P" for property. "D" may confuse with system properties.

That's an idea. Hmm....

> Therefor at least the core components should be build in a reusable way or
> the object model Project<-1--*-Task may be extended  to
> Project<-1--*-Task-1---*>Task (UML in simple ASCII is not easy - I hope you
> get the idea).

So, you're saying that tasks should be able to hold multiple other
tasks? As I said in another email, I'm not sure about this... I think
that taking the reflection tree down in just pure object sense (and
leaving tasks as a single layer ordered list) makes the most sense to me
right now. But maybe I misread the UML. ;)

> We already preinstall ANT on all our dev machines. I would like to have a
> built time option to include optional stuff into the ant which gets
> installed. I do not think this is an issue, I simply would like
> extensibility not only at run time using some sophisticated installation
> procedure, but also at build time.

Right. Noted. Is it acceptable for the optional tasks to be in the
directory hierarchy of the distribution?

> YES for common internal representation. As others pointed out, a common
> external representation is too much.
> I would even suggest to use the URL object as representation of resources.

So, you'd prefer to see file://foo/bar? That's pretty much what foo/bar
would be. Hmmm.

> For extensibility objects manipulation file content should offer a stream
> based interface, to allow integration of resources provided by FTP or HTTP
> servers or database (YES, we are working on this).

Interesting idea. Copy in a directory hierarchy from a server somewhere.
Or grab the latest version of a DTD from the W3C. Plies elaborate.


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