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From "Paulo Gaspar" <paulo.gas...@krankikom.de>
Subject RE: [Vote] Avalon-Framework integration
Date Sun, 20 May 2001 16:04:42 GMT
I come to late to this thread, but as a recent user of 
parts of Avalon, this is my experience:

 - At the first sight, Avalon sure looks to be abusing 
   some abstractions a bit - specially the roles thing.
   In this case, Conor MacNeill remarks seem to make some 
   sense (one needs to absorb the "Avalon culture" to use 
   some of those things);

 - Another problem with Avalon, are package names like 
   "excalibur" or "phoenix" that are (to say the least)
   a bit less helpful than I would like them;

BUT

 - Conor chooses a bad example: the configuration stuff 
   is trivial to use. As I am also a recent user of Ant, 
   it is very clear in my fresh memories that 
   understanding how to make a custom Ant task was a bit 
   harder than using the Avalon's configuration stuff for
   the first time (with more source code reading and all);

 - Many parts of Avalon are so highly reusable outside of 
   the framework context, that it would even make a lot 
   sense to move them to the Commons including, at least:
     org.apache.avalon.framework 
     org.apache.avalon.framework.configuration 
     org.apache.avalon.excalibur.io 
     org.apache.avalon.excalibur.collections     
     org.apache.avalon.excalibur.concurrent     
     org.apache.avalon.excalibur.datasource
     org.apache.avalon.excalibur.pool
   (These last 4 seem to already have Commons 
   counterparts.)

 - As for the documentation, it was quite easy to me to
   understand what I use trough the Javadocs, only taking
   a look to the source code in order to understand the
   the code's quality (which is quite good/clear for me).


I have seen some prejudice against Avalon in some Apache 
lists. I think you would be better by making a serious 
evaluation before deciding - or you might be reinventing
more wheels than you need to.

Conor remarks just suggest that he paid much more 
attention to Richard Gabriel's book than to the 
configuration package he talks about, or he would easily
understand that the number of classes in the 
configuration package has to with it being extensible.

org.apache.avalon.framework.configuration has a reader 
for XML, but you can use it to configure your application 
from a different source (e.g.: from properties files, 
JNDI, etc.) just by coupling an appropriate reader, with 
no change to the rest of you code.

I understood that just from reading the Javadocs. I am 
sure anyone can do that too.


Have fun,
Paulo Gaspar


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