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From "Phil Steitz" <>
Subject Re: [PROPOSAL] PMC Vote to incubate Directory Project
Date Mon, 22 Sep 2003 19:56:22 GMT
See comments inline

Noel J. Bergman wrote:
>>I have no problem with protocol-centric projects, and no problem with
>>language-centric projects, but I do have a problem with protocol-centric
>>projects that assume one implementation language is "best".
> OK, I've seen enough language wars to understand your a priori concern.
> Mind you, not everyone who uses Java is a language zealot.
>>So, if the project is going to be language-agnostic, then
>>I want that written into the charter and growth anticipated.
> We tried to anticipate this issue when preparing the proposal, and did
> intentionally focus on the problem domain, rather than the platform,
> excepting where the platform permitted *additional* synergies with other
> projects (code sharing and embedding with related Java projects).
> Apparently we did not do it sufficiently, but the intent is there, as is the
> willingness to resolve the matter.

The dodgy bit is defining what is core and what is not. See below.

>>If someone else comes to Apache and says they want to start
>>an LDAP server project using, for example, the Netscape code
>>base (C++, I think) and another comes in wanting to establish
>>a Python library for builtin calls to LDAP, should the ASF
>>direct those projects to this same group or to their own projects?
> Aren't Xerces-[C|J] and Xalan-[J|C] under the XML banner?  Not being a
> member of those projects, I'd appreciate hearing the experiences of those
> who are, and from their PMC.
> Yes, I can see the potential of possibly growing too big for proper
> oversight, and needing to split out, leaving the language-agnostic items in
> the language-agnostic location.  But, in a sense, haven't those things
> already happened, as projects were refactored from Jakarta to XML to
> elsewhere (e.g., their own TLP or Web Services)?
> On the other hand, when(if) matured to TLP status, I'd imagine that there
> would be some infrastructure related to particular implementations, and
> parts related to all sorts of portable issues, such as schema, RFCs, ASN,
> protocol testing, etc., that are common ground.  And, quite honestly, I do
> not see that type of collaboration happening if the semantic domain isn't
> given a home.

I don't think that we have really answered Roy's question, but digging 
into what exactly we mean by the "semantic domain" is a step in the 
right direction. The "easy" answer is that the semantic domain equals 
LDAP-exposed directory services, which is fully specification-driven, 
platform- and language independent, etc; but the project already 
includes more than that.

We should ask ourselves if we expect to provide a home for extended 
Perl, C or whatever APIs, naming services for those languages, etc.  If 
the answer is "yes", then fine, we can all agree and move forward.  If 
the answer is no, however, I agree with Roy that we should acknowledge 
the scope limitation.

FWIW, my opinion is that standards-based Directory + Identity services 
could make up a natural "semantic domain" (actually more natural than 
"XML") and we should focus on defining this domain, rather than what 
languages or language-specific extensions will be supported (much as 
that diminishes the importance of JNDI and the extended Java APIs that I 
am personally looking forward to ;-)). Then we need to make the explicit 
commitment that the core solutions implemented and the eventual TLP will 
support *all* languages and *all* computing platforms. Can we all agree 
to this?


> 	--- Noel
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