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From Mikeal Rogers <>
Subject [Proposal] Windmill
Date Thu, 14 Aug 2008 20:32:23 GMT
This is a proposal to enter the incubator.

See for the most
up-to-date version.

We look forward to comments and discussion.

= Abstract =

The goal of Windmill is to build the best tool for automated testing  
of dynamic Web applications across all major browsers.

= Proposal =

Windmill provides a full-stack automation solution for dynamic Web- 
application testing.

It accomplishes this by implementing an extensive test API in  
JavaScript, and providing an intelligent proxy that can overcome the  
browser's same-domain security policy. The test API allows a single  
test to run on every major browser across all major operating systems.

Windmill boasts a wide range of debugging and test-authoring tools  
that make test writing, debugging, and editing a more streamlined  

= Background =

Windmill was created at the Open Source Applications Foundation by  
Mikeal Rogers and Adam Christian to test the Chandler Server Web UI.  
It was announced more broadly at OSCON 2007 and has since enjoyed a  
wide range of use and contributions.

In January 2008, all the full-time, paid contributors from OSAF moved  
on to other employment. The project has since retained steady  
contribution despite having no full-time, paid contributors.

In July 2008, we proposed the project move its hosting away from OSAF  
because of uncertainty about long term sustainability -- due to OSAF's  
transition to a smaller-scale, mostly volunteer structure.

= Rationale =

Windmill was created to fulfill a need for a better dynamic Web- 
application testing tool after much frustration with existing  
solutions. We believe it has accomplished this goal and continues to  
improve, with ongoing, open interaction with the community.

What the project currently lacks is clear direction, leadership, and  
process. We believe the project would benefit greatly from Incubator  
mentorship, which would allow it to see much wider adoption, and grow  
a broader community.

= Current Status =

== Meritocracy ==

Since the project's inception, its development has been coordinated  
through collaborative decision-making (e.g., "+1 voting") on the  
mailing list, and open discussion on IRC.

== Community ==

Although the list of Core Developers has remained small we’ve welcomed  
outside contributions. Along with a few small but good patches, we’ve  
received some very good bugs and numerous features requests from the  
community. Our wiki documentation is being continually improved by our  

We also have a very good reputation of providing support and resolving  
problems on IRC (#windmill on number of our users  
have stayed around to help others in need.

== Core Developers ==

Mikeal Rogers (Most of the Python code)
Adam Christian (Most of the JavaScript code)

== Alignment ==

Since Windmill was started at OSAF, it has enjoyed contributions from  
a variety of paid staff at OSAF. All of those employees are now  
employed elsewhere -- below are the ones that are still active.

  * Mikeal Rogers (Mozillla)
  * Adam Christian (Slide)
  * Matthew Eernisse (Seesmic)

= Known Risks =

== Orphaned Products ==

The project has survived the loss of paid contributions and continues  
to grow in use, despite a clear lack of leadership (I have only myself  
to blame).

== Inexperience with Open Source ==

All the contributors have a history in open-source development and the  
policies of the project were developed with the help of Ted Leung.

== Reliance on Salaried Developers ==

As of July 2008 one developer is paid part-time for his work on  
Windmill. The rest of the contributions are all volunteer at this time.

== A Excessive Fascination with the Apache Brand ==

One can’t ignore the impact the Apache brand has on a project, but  
what this project needs isn’t branding -- it’s the benefit of  
Incubator mentorship, direction, leadership, and process.

= Documentation =

= Initial Source =

The code is currently hosted on OSAF’s Subversion server.

= Source and Intellectual Property Submission Plan =

We’ve gotten consent from OSAF to move the project to new location.

= External Dependencies =

We have a long list of external Python dependencies. These  
dependencies are managed via setuptools and are not distributed with  
the Windmill product and as such should not need be a licensing concern.

= Required Resources =

== Mailing lists ==

  * windmill-commits
  * windmill-dev
  * windmill-users

== Subversion Directory ==

== Issue Tracking ==

JIRA Windmill

= Initial Committers =

  * Mikeal Rogers
  * Adam Christian
  * Matthew Eernisse

= Sponsors =

== Champion ==

Ted Leung

== Nominated Mentors ==

  * Ted Leung

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