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From Conor MacNeill <>
Subject Re: Ant 2 et al.
Date Tue, 09 Jul 2002 15:45:35 GMT

On Wednesday, July 10, 2002, at 12:46 , wrote:

> Adding namespace support in ant1 is perfectly possible, as you know.
> There is a working PluginHelper in proposals, that works with
> ant1.5.

Adding namespace support is not a backward compatible change, though
<project name="test" default="test">
   <target name="test">
     <taskdef name="test:echo" 
     <test:echo message="hello"/>

Of course this is a contrived example but it illustrates just how 
limiting the backward compatibility requirement really is. So sorry, no 
namespace support possible.

>> Anyway, my point is that it is probably easy to grab features from the
>> proposals but without the underlying architecture, the result may not
>> always be that good.
> My point is that ant1 architecute is one of the best, there is nothing
> fundamentally wrong. And from looking at both proposals, I believe
> they add complexity and I don't think the result is better.

Encapsulation is fundamental and Ant1 does not have it, severely 
complicating evolution. Nevertheless I do not hope to change your mind.
> Of course, any proposal needs to start by saying that whatever was
> before is broken and can never be fixed.

I identified what was wrong with Ant1. There is no point proposing a 
change unless you have issues with the current system. If you think the 
current system is cool maybe you should hang out on ant-user. Putting 
all jars in ANT_HOME/lib is not my idea of a good system.

> Most revolutions I know
> are far for perfect, and some were far worse than what it was
> before ( I'm thinking about general history here, not jakarta :-)

So, some revolutions are necessary and liberate people from the yoke of 
tyranny :-) (Not thinking of Ant1, of course)

> I still have to see one real issue that can't be resolved by
> the current codebase but can be by a proposal.

Sure you can do anything in Ant1. But it is harder than it has to be. 
Want to build a GUI, sure just pop in your own parsing code. Want to 
reuse the copy task outside ant, grab project, project helper, etc, etc. 
Give me polymorphism, run me a task which uses a different XML parser 
from that used by Ant, etc, etc.

For me the question has become whether it is worthwhile continuing to 
develop Mutant at all. If the broad consensus of the committers is to 
continue along the Ant1 evolutionary path then lets just say so. There 
is a lot of committers from whom nothing has been heard on these threads.

You don't want a vote but the alternative is limbo.


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