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From roger day <>
Subject Re: Ant: pros and cons!
Date Tue, 20 Jul 2004 08:53:31 GMT
Maybe you should look at XSLT - that is XML and is (almost and in some
cases is) a functional language.

One of the original aims for XML was that it should be hand-craftable
as well as being used for data exchange. If only I had that link

I'm with you on the last paragraph if only for a seperation of
concerns. People who write and maintain distribution configurations
are a different set to those who write build tools. In fact, I'm in
the process of writing such a language - in XML - which I've partially
described in another email to this thread. Unfortunately it's an
internal project.


On Tue, 20 Jul 2004 09:56:17 +0200, Johan Vromans CPWR
<> wrote:
> > Pro:
> >  - Ant is a Java based build tool. Like java, it is platform independent.
> Despite popular belief (or marketing hype, just a way of looking at it) Java is
> not platform independent. There are Java implementations for selected platforms,
> and if you are fortunate enough to run a well supported platform it _seems_ like
> platform independent. But Java's level of abstraction is just too high, and many
> serious applications need to resort to native code, breaking the whole 'write
> once, run everywhere' idea.
> > Cons:
> >  - It is not as powerful as batch/shell scripts. If you are not
> > regularly  using different OS's, why bother?
> >  - It is not designed to offer decision or looping structures as easily
> > as  they are offered in batch/shell scripts? Why?
> The Ant design team has always stated that they wanted the Ant control language
> to be descriptive, and not a scripting (or programming) language. And failed. If
> you have variables (properties) and conditions (if="propname") you have a
> programming language. So you better go for a real programming language. The
> current situation is that we have the worst of all: it's not a programming
> language, it's not a scripting language, it's not even XML anymore.
> Besides, XML is designed for computers to exchange information in a well-defined
> manner. It should not be hand-crafted.
> I think Ant could be made (more) useful/succesful with a high-level build
> description language _intended for human production_, in particular when
> combined with a nice GUI tool.
> -- Johan
> The above statements and opinions are strictly my own, and do not necessarily
> represent the views of Compuware.
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