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From Christopher Berry <>
Subject RE: target as a property
Date Thu, 26 Jul 2001 16:04:46 GMT
This seems to be a recurring theme in the Ant world.

I would like to add something::  Great software is grown. It evolves. It is
constantly rethought, and refactored. The most important thing we can do is
listen --  listen to the code, and listen to the User's of that code.
Feedback is critical. And reacting to that feedback is the essence of

Over and over, a great many Ant User's keep asking for the same features.
E.g. <foreach>, <if>, <unsetproperty>, ${target}, etc., etc. Are we all
misguided souls?? Isn't it possible that we are supplying valid feedback??
Feedback that could take Ant to even greater places?? 

Remember that these User's are just poor souls like me, with real-world
problems to solve -- with real deadlines -- often working in large, existing
"make" systems. Architectural Purity is often a luxury we cannot afford.  

Is bifurcating Ant really a valid option?? 

Maybe it is time to let go a little. Like a proud parent seeing your child
grow. Not necessarily always in the direction you might choose. But that's
just part of being a parent.

All that said, Pete, I am a very big fan of Ant. Big enough that I have gone
out on a limb to introduce it into a large, complicated build system -- in
an organization somewhat intimidated by change. 

I really appreciate what you, Conor, Stefan, Diane, et al are doing. 

Thanks for listening,
-- Chris

> -----Original Message-----
> From: Peter Donald []
> Sent: Thursday, July 26, 2001 10:36 AM
> To:
> Subject: Re: target as a property
> On Fri, 27 Jul 2001 01:22, Larry V. Streepy, Jr. wrote:
> > I will maintain a calm, friendly, debate style tone...
> >
> > Pete, I am really trying to understand why figuring out all 
> the possible
> > ways I might use a feature, then determining if you aren't 
> a fan any of
> > the possible uses, is the right way to determine if a 
> feature should be
> > in ant.
> Engineering 101. Analyze potential uses (or use cases) of 
> feature. If it adds 
> less value than it costs then don't add it. What do you see 
> as a problem with 
> this process?
> > I'm asking that the committers not try to be the thought 
> police of the
> > ant user community.  Let us decide how to use the tool.  It is that
> > after all, a tool.  If I hit myself in the head with a 
> hammer, it's my
> > fault, not the fault of the hammer manufacturer (current 
> legal evidence
> > to the contrary not withstanding :-)
> The whole point of committers is to increase the quality and 
> maintain the 
> vision of a product. ie We are meant to be thought police. If 
> you feel we are 
> doing something wrong then this is opensource - feel free to 
> start a fork up 
> on sourceforge and use that copy.
> > I apologize if offended anyone with this email.
> It takes a lot more to offend than that ... theres been far 
> worse insults and 
> in many ways "thought police" is a tag given to successful 
> project developers 
> ;)
> Cheers,
> Pete
> *-----------------------------------------------------*
> | "Faced with the choice between changing one's mind, |
> | and proving that there is no need to do so - almost |
> | everyone gets busy on the proof."                   |
> |              - John Kenneth Galbraith               |
> *-----------------------------------------------------*

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