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From Stefan Bodewig <bode...@bost.de>
Subject Re: Ant Principles
Date Tue, 18 Apr 2000 09:45:04 GMT
>>>>> "JDD" == James Duncan Davidson <james.davidson@eng.sun.com> writes:

First of all, thanks for putting this together. Having this kind of
document will help all the newbies (including myself) to see what Ant
is intended to be and what not.

 JDD>   After all dependancies have been executed, the current target
 JDD> has its task list examined and the tasks within that list are
 JDD> configured and executed in sequential order. [...]

 JDD> [...] It is
 JDD> important that this configuration happens just before execution,
 JDD> and after execution of the previous task, so that any
 JDD> configuration information that depends on properties can be
 JDD> properly conveyed.

Yes, this will definitively add to the understandability goal. It took
me quite some time to note that this is not the way it works rigth
now.

 JDD>   The other part that needs work is what happens inside the
 JDD> taskimpl areas.

I like the way attributes and nested elements are handled right
now. Using reflection for the createXXX methods (or addText in the
case of CDATA areas) should decouple the runtime from XML good enough.

 JDD>      $install_dir/ext/tasktype1.jar 
 JDD>                                    /META-INF/taskdef.xml

 JDD>   The /META-INF/taskdef.xml file defines the task name and the
 JDD> task class.

 JDD>   When ant starts, it scans the /ext dir, loads in all tasks and
 JDD> makes them available to the runtime. It doesn't do this by
 JDD> placing them on the classpath in the ant.sh script, but by using
 JDD> JAR class loaders.

I really like the idea of the ext directory but would prefer a way to
specify which extension to load when starting ant. I can easily
imagine extensions that are not used in every project.

Then again as long as classes are only loaded from the JAR files when
the corresponding task is actually executed we only get a little
runtime hit at startup.

 JDD>   When ant is installed, a ant.xml file is placed into the
 JDD> user's user.dir that defines where the ant installation is. If
 JDD> this isn't present and ant is started, it should ask the user.

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