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From "Winnebeck, Jason" <>
Subject RE: Maven coordinates going forward
Date Thu, 30 Mar 2017 16:00:50 GMT
I think others have characterized it differently, but in my mind that is the “Python” scenario.
Groovy 3 comes out and immediately makes all existing code incompatible. Without an incremental
upgrade path, users, especially enterprise users, are faced with a rewrite and have no choice
but to basically stay on Groovy 2 forever. With so many users staying on 2.x, it will fragment
the community and the limited support that Groovy receives. While http-builder-ng is a good
example of an updated project, even for that project’s documentation says it’s not backwards
compatible so it’s not a drop-in replacement either. At least with Java library usage being
very popular, there will be a lot of libraries we can still use in G3. If it’s still possible
for G2 to co-exist, then at least I can update my own code to G3 while I wait (perhaps forever)
for libraries to update to G2, and I can deploy upgrades incrementally. An atomic rewrite
all functionality from scratch is never a valid scenario for 10+ year old projects.


From: Guillaume Laforge []
Sent: Thursday, March 30, 2017 10:21 AM
Subject: Re: Maven coordinates going forward

And there's also groovy-wslite.

Also we can't wait for all possible abandonned project to update to a newer version of Groovy.
Those projects depending on libraries using an old version of Groovy should probably just
not upgrade at all.

On Thu, Mar 30, 2017 at 4:09 PM, David Clark <<>>
The original http-builder is unmaintained. However http-builder-ng is maintained:

We already had to change the maven coordinates because of Maven/Sonatype restrictions, so
things should be fine provided people upgrade to the newer library.

On Thu, Mar 30, 2017 at 8:12 AM, Winnebeck, Jason <<>>
Can you explain the story around a library like<>tp-builder:http-builder,
which is no longer really maintained? What happens to such a library when Groovy 3 comes out
and we are using that library? Let's say there is no maintainer to update the sources to Groovy
3 and re-release.


-----Original Message-----
From: Russel Winder [<>]
Sent: Thursday, March 30, 2017 3:54 AM
Subject: Re: Maven coordinates going forward
On Thu, 2017-03-30 at 09:26 +0200, Cédric Champeau wrote:
> We have to keep in mind that there's a larger story here, which is
> supporting Groovy as a module. And this *will* require package changes
> and binary breaking changes. So I don't think the status quo is
> acceptable in the long run.

So why not make Groovy 3 the place to do this?

Whatever has been said about the Python situation, the core problem was not the breaking change,
the problem was the lack of active management of the change.

Python is a source deployment language where JRE-based langauges are not. Thus JRE-based application
have the classic COBOL, FORTRAN, and Fortran problem of "we've lost the source" (banks and
governments are the usual suspects for this). I would exclude this situation from our thinking.
Organisations in such a state (as some UK banks and the UK government is) should take it as
an opportunity to revolutionise (which the UK government is, cf. the job adverts for COBOL,
FORTRAN and Fortran knowledgeable people who also know Python, Java, etc.

Python also had the problem of Python 2.6 and 2.7 along with 3.3 and
3.4 (3.0, 3.1 and 3.2 can safely be ignored now). Having 2.6 and 3.3 in the mix made for a
very hard time. Allowing only 2.7 and 3.4+ in the mix made for a much, much easier time. So
initially moving from Python
2 to Python 3 was a manual task (bad management by the Python 3 folk), then came the six generation
of upgrade tooling (a start). By dropping
2.6 and 3.3, we get the far nicer future upgrade tooling (which works nicely to create 2.7
and 3.4+ compatible code). The moral here is choose the versions being upgraded from and to,
and then make some nice automation.

So if we assume a base of Groovy 2.4 and ignore all previous Groovys and the breaking change
of 3.0 can we write some Groovy (obviously :-) scripts that automate source changes?

If the Python 2 → Python 3 breaking change had been more actively managed with earlier arrival
of six and future, the problems would have been much less. Most of the vocal Python 2 Remainers
have now made their codes run on both Python 2 and Python 3, and there are very few complaints
about providing Python 3 only. OK so there are still a few people who say "we must support
Python 2.5" but those people are few and far between and are, in the main, totally ignored.
Python 4 will undoubtedly have breaking changes, but they will be better managed in terms
of supporting multi-version working and automated (well at least
semi-automated) upgrading and mixed-version working. The lessons of six and future have been
well learned.

So Groovy will have breaking changes, this is right and proper. Put in place tools for upgrading,
and support multi-version working where possible and practical. Do not be swayed by calls
for "we must change nothing, backward compatibility". They have a version of Groovy that works
for them so they should not upgrade – ever again. That must not stop the rest of us from

Dr Russel Winder      t: +44 20 7585 2200<tel:+44%2020%207585%202200>   voip:<>
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Guillaume Laforge
Apache Groovy committer & PMC Vice-President
Developer Advocate @ Google Cloud Platform

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