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From "Geir Magnusson Jr." <ge...@apache.org>
Subject Re: a harmonious and inclusive community
Date Sat, 23 Jul 2005 15:36:21 GMT

On Jul 22, 2005, at 7:59 PM, Mark Wielaard wrote:

> Hi,
> On Fri, 2005-07-22 at 10:18 +0100, Tim Ellison wrote:
>> It seems that all roads lead back to the discussion of licensing and
>> philosophy.  Even that has degenerated into name calling which is
>> unhelpful for building a harmonious and inclusive community.
>> While I understand perfectly that unifying the existing efforts in
>> J2SE-space is a goal of Harmony, I believe we need more visibility on
>> this list of the progress and successes in this space.  Without such
>> visibility we appear to be going in circles, and many people who
>> initially expressed great interest in the project will walk away.
> Thanks for trying to move forward with a positive message.
> I was indeed about to give up, not really because I personally feel
> excluded, but because we seem to completely fail to reach out to the
> 50/80 people working on the existing free efforts. And I cannot do it
> without the support of these people. They have worked for years on all
> aspects of what Harmony wants to do. They are very bright, smart  
> people.
> And they are clearly proud that things like Tomcat, Eclipse, Jonas,
> Lucene, Axis, etc and all those other large free programs actually  
> work
> now on the free systems. The community around harmony seems to  
> sometimes
> dismiss some of this work. And I do feel we won't have a healthy
> community if we cannot bridge the gap with all those existing hackers
> (some of which already work on all this stuff full time).

I don't think we dismiss this work - after all, we worked hared to  
make sure that these communities were part of the start, and we're  
working to chance standard apache policy to accommodate them (the  
list policy, for example...)

> Some of the people around the GNU Classpath projects really don't
> feel that they are part of Harmony. And I do try to bring them in. But
> when some of these people tried to get a feeling how/what people  
> thought
> about what they have been working on for the last few years there  
> wasn't
> any real technical feedback. The only feedback given is that it wasn't
> distributed under the Apache License. Which a lot of people  
> interpreted
> as being offensive and hostile.

IIRC, that wasn't in any way a community sentiment.  I certainly wish  
you would distribute under the AL :) but I respect your decision to  
choose the license under which you wish to work.

> My mistake was that I kind of tried to
> show (probably too aggressively) how annoying and uncooperative  
> that is.
> Almost every existing project has a problem with the Apache License  
> just
> because it isn't compatible with the GPL. This is infuriating (to both
> sides!).

> I don't believe I got my point across and I believe people now  
> think it
> is all about licensing. But it really was about dismissing (not  
> properly
> investigating) the work already done this last decade by other free
> software groups. And those groups do have some really nice ideas in
> their designs. And it is backed up with real free code and real free
> runtimes on very different platforms that use it. And from working  
> with
> these people for some years now I know they like comparing and
> discussing technical details. Show their own strengths were they  
> can and
> cooperate on common code when it makes sense.

Well, lets be fair here.  I think that the VM/classlib interface is  
important and a good place to start discussions.  I used "the work  
already done this last decade by other free software groups" - namely  
the GNU Classpath VM interface - as a starting point.

You have to give me credit - not only didn't I ignore it, I used it  
as the basic starting point.

I did offer criticism, as I felt that extending java.lang was  
problematic for both engineering reasons as well as legal ones, and I  
seem to recall both dismissed out of hand.  I'd like to put that  
behind us and keep going, now that we have more good ideas and  
experience through Tim and Graeme.

> Please investigate what people have been working on all these  
> years, and
> please give real technical feedback. Maybe the designs of Kaffe, GCJ,
> IKVM, JCVM, JamVM, JikesRVM, SableVM, JNode, Kissme, CACAO, etc. are
> really bad. And maybe they are really completely unportable to  
> different
> systems/platforms. But if so then I am sure the designers would  
> like to
> know about that. Lets try to engage them into a discussion.

At the same time, I encourage getting real technical feedback FROM  
those people too :)

> And there are often interface design discussions on the classpath
> mailinglist, please monitor that list
> (http://lists.gnu.org/archive/html/classpath/).
> Andrew Hughes really worked hard to document our current interfaces as
> now published with the latest GNU Classpath release at:
> http://www.gnu.org/software/classpath/docs/vmintegration.html
> Please discuss what seems impractical in this design for adoption  
> of GNU
> Classpath as core library set.

Any chance of making them available under Mit/X license?  ;)


Geir Magnusson Jr                                  +1-203-665-6437

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