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From "James Margaris" <>
Subject RE: Projects in trouble or otherwise needing help
Date Thu, 15 Nov 2007 00:32:17 GMT
I am one of the pimary committers on XAP. As far as the board report, I just plain missed it
until it was too late.
As far as the community building is concerned, yes the lists are basically dead. However work
does continue on the project, for better or worse.
Part of the reason I stopped using the lists is that substantive responses were rare. The
only thing I ever got comments on were things like naming and copyright notices. Of course
that is a chicken and egg problem to some degree, there is no community so nobody uses the
lists to discuss so there is no community.
It would help me if someone could help me understand how to make XAP more appealing and interesting
to the Apache community. Is the problem that there are no good samples and demos? The website
isn't good? Nobody understands what the point is?
I like discussing technical issues with people but I don't like posting technical thoughts
only to be met consistently by silence. At that point it becomes busywork, just going through
the motions for the sake of appearances.
The XAP project is not like projects like Kabuki that never did any development and never
responded on the lists. There is active development and if someone ever posted to the lists
I'm sure someone would respond. Right now posting on the lists feels like playing to an empty
James Margaris 


From: Robert Burrell Donkin []
Sent: Wed 11/14/2007 2:42 PM
Subject: Re: Projects in trouble or otherwise needing help

(forgive the rambling reply)

On Nov 12, 2007 4:47 PM, Noel J. Bergman <> wrote:
>   XAP - mailing lists show almost no discussion, mostly JIRA issues and
> commits

XAP is an interesting case. in some ways, i think that XAP has always
been short of just one independent developer showing up to scratch an
itch. there was no end of endeavour in the early days from the team to
try to fit in. the atmosphere has always been open, polite and
encouraging to outsiders but the volumes of people turning up on list
have just too far too low. i've tried to figure out some rational
explanation for this but i don't have one.

at apachecon EU, rob gave a very well attended session on XAP and many
people had questions. but no one really showed up on list to follow up
afterwards. not sure why.

martin tried hard for quite a while to encourage the team to talk a
lot more on the list without long term success. it's tough, though. i
find it hard to explain why talking is vital for community building.
most of the time, no one is listening but sometimes, just sometimes a
few words flung out into the ether will connect with someone. one
connection with someone who goes onto become a long term contributor
then pays back the time spent on the rest. but if there really isn't
anyone listening then the effort is really wasted. in many ways, the
fault is mine. i probably should have found more time to actively
promote community building and envanlegise (but JAMES took a lot more
energy than i'd expected).

i'm not an expert in this area but the design ideas seemed to me
powerful and unusual enough to be worth allowing development to
continue whilst there were developers willing to code. however, this
unusual miss may be that this is a sign that the people that brought
XAP to apache are finally starting to run out of patience. on the
other hand, it's possible that someone will show up on list tomorrow
and say - XAP's cool but here's a patch that'll make it even cooler.
if that happens, then that may be all that's needed to kick start the

- robert

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