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From Stefano Mazzocchi <>
Subject Re: Cocoon Competitors... Wanted
Date Thu, 22 Jun 2000 12:47:18 GMT
montefin wrote:
> Stefano,
> I agree with you almost totally.
> Yes, not only does Matt Sergeant credit Cocoon with what I'd have to
> term 'inspirations' in AxKit, he also points out features of Cocoon2
> that AxKit does provide, and those which only Cocoon2 will have.
> It's also great to see compliments flying back and forth. Bravo!

> Stefano Mazzocchi wrote:
> >
> > In fact, AxKit is using ideas and design patterns from this project and
> > allows Perl people to have a taste of them. And giving back full credits
> > to us.
> >
> > I consider this a very good thing to do since Cocoon cannot possibly
> > cover all possible cases and Perl makes perfect sense for some cases.
> >
> > I don't know of Zope's support for XML but I like their project, they
> > are a serious group of developers and I've been told their software
> > rocks. This is very good for them.
> >
> Zope, btw, is way cool. I began with Zope shortly after I began with
> Cocoon, about mid-1999 as my logs show. And I have got to say, I doubt
> if I would have clocked so much 'flight time' on Cocoon if it hadn't
> promised so much; and so little 'flight time' on Zope if it hadn't been
> such a slam dunk. But I seriously doubt if I'll become anybody's
> developer.
> montefin wrote:
> > >
> > > I have more 'flight time' with Cocoon than the others. But I think
> > > that's partly a consequence of the time it takes to get Cocoon cooking.
> >
> Stefano Mazzocchi wrote:
> >
> > Ever considered how much intentionality there is in this ;-)
> >
> Stefano, how Machiavellian!

:) honestly it was half a joke.
> Still, it helped that I was doing a lot of Java as opposed to Python at
> the time. I mean, who _does_ Python anyway? Maybe they _have_ to make it
> easy.

Nah, I know lots of people who happen to use and like Python, not as
many as Java, that's true, but they don't have such powerful marketing
engines behind their backs. Python deserves every user it has.
> And Perl? Well Perl is Perl -- the Swiss Army Chainsaw of Unix. You
> either love it or refuse to admit it exists.

Perl is another programming language. Just like Java or C or Eiffel or
Smalltalk or Dylan or Schema or Cobol or Prolog or List or Pascal or Ada
or Fortran.... and so on.

The fact that there many different programming languages have been
invented over the years, it doesn't show the weakness of a single one
(in fact, all turing-complete languages are equal in terms of
programmability power), but the need for differentiation.

This is why I think that programming-language-based religious wars are
mostly stupid: I don't use airplanes to go downtown, even if I love
airplanes. As well I don't use a Ferrari in the traffic, even if
Ferrari's are totally cool.

Also, there are cases where a language was born with some idea and users
happened to find usages for many other problems: java on the server
side, perl for installation scripts, xslt for code generation.

Sorry if I divagate. I myself love Java and XSLT because they match my
way of reasoning... while Perl doesn't.... but sometimes I need small
use-only-once programs and I know Perl would be killer for it. Same
thing with Prolog.

This is why I badly wanted XSP to be language abstracted: logic should
be expressed with any syntax/pattern you like the most and whatever
topology of your problem space allows you to go from A to B with the
least path.

Using a single language for everything is -always- wrong, no matter what
> montefin wrote:
> >
> > > Zope's documentation makes it a breeze to setup, so I haven't had to
> > > 'do' much with or for it.
> >
> Stefano Mazzocchi wrote:
> >
> > Yep, it's harder to create a community out of perfect software... and a
> > community is what drives a project in the long run...
> >
> Stefano, there is where you and I disagree. Without a doubt in my mind,
> I have got to believe that logically, in the long run, a "community of
> _users_" is what drives a project. That's right, _low_down_rotten_users
> like me. And you know what? That's the beauty part.
> Stefano, if you would just say "It should be easy to install Coccon."
> Guess what? Cocoon would become almost overnight a dream to install and
> run. You have that much influence. And for that very reason, even more
> developers would flock to Cocoon.

Ok, enough joking: have you ever installed another servlet which matches
Cocoon complexity without having to change _a_single_line_ of
configuration properties? have you ever found servlets that work with
very little changes on almost _all_ servlet containers available in the
world ranging from Servlet 2.0, 2.1, 2.2 and Java 1.1.x Java 1.2.x and
Java 1.3.x?


Well, this should tell you something.

I spent several _months_ cleaning up all those little devilish details
that you guys don't even see, all those if this is null, if that is
present, if this and that...

Cocoon1 is simply _too_ complex to be easy to install. Period.

This is why Cocoon2 will work _ONLY_ on Java 1.2+ and Servlet 2.2+ and
will be avalon based.

So you get your cocoon2.war file, you drop into your servlet container
and bang, you are done.

Why this is not possible today? because Servlet 2.0 and Java 1.1
suck!!!!!! but we have to support them because tons of users happen to
do things that ran perfectly on those platforms and many OS didn't have
a decent Java 1.2 JVM since very recently.

So, tell me: you'd rather having me writing tons of documents about
making this blob of inelegant patches called Cocoon1 easier to install,
or spend my time designing something that will be so easy to install and
so elegant in its architecture that it will require a couple of lines of
README to do it?
> Stefano Mazzocchi wrote:
> > I'm not saying it should not be easy to install a software... but
> > sometimes it doesn't hurt to take it easy and let people get their hands
> > dirty with code... for sure, helps creating possible developers..
> >
> BTW, Stefano, like many innovators, sometimes people put words in your
> mouth. Once, another list member sloughed off some help I requested in
> getting Cocoon-1.6.1 setup when I mentioned I had another version of
> Cocoon working already under Exeter. He told me that you had said that
> more than one instance of Cocoon on a system was more or less not
> doable. Well, I currently have 3 instances of Cocoon running on this Red
> Hat 6.1 box: (Coccon-1.3.1 under Exeter, Cocoon-1.6.1 under ApacheJServ,
> and Cocoon-1.7.4 under Tomcat) all working just fine and staying out of
> each other's way, and all thanks to you and your team of wizards.

If you place more Cocoon instances _in_the_same_ Java 1.1 JVM and work
with XSP you'll have classloading problems. Many of the JServ and tomcat
problems about XSP missing classes or questions like "where do I put my
jars to let XSP see them", all happen because of this stupid idea Sun
engineers had of a system classloader based on a stupid enviornment
string. And the jre/lib/ext directory doesn't help either.

Cocoon2 will have its own classloader and you won't have to specify
_anything_ in your container classpath since Cocoon2 will handle all
this things for you. NOTE: you require JDK 1.2 at least to be able to do
this... this is why we couldn't make it work this way today.

> Stefano Mazzocchi wrote:
> >
> > (don't freak out, people, Cocoon2 will have better docs, I promise)
> >
> Me freak out? Never happen. I'm Italian :)

Great point :)

Stefano Mazzocchi      One must still have chaos in oneself to be
                          able to give birth to a dancing star.
<>                             Friedrich Nietzsche
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