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From Troy Howard <>
Subject [VOTE] Accept Lucene.Net for incubation
Date Thu, 27 Jan 2011 06:05:38 GMT

Since posting the Lucene.Net Incubator proposal announcement on Jan
12th, we now have three mentors signed up and would like to call a
vote to accept Lucene.Net into the Apache Incubator.

The proposal is included below and can also be found at:

Please cast your votes:

[ ] +1 Accept Lucene.Net for incubation
[ ] +0 Don't care
[ ] -1 Reject for the following reason:


= Lucene.Net - A .NET port of Lucene =
== Preface ==
Lucene.Net is a sub-project which is being spun off from the Lucene
TLP but is not yet ready for graduation. We propose to address certain
needs of the project by transitioning to an Incubator Podling.

== Abstract ==
Lucene.Net will be a port of the Lucene search engine library, written
in C# and targeted at .NET runtime users.

== Proposal ==
Lucene.Net has three aims. First, it will maintain the existing
line-by-line port from Java to C#, fully automating and commoditizing
the process such that the project can easily synchronize with the Java
Lucene release schedule. Second, it will be a high-performance C#
search engine library. Third, it will maximize its usability and power
when used within the .NET runtime. To that end, it will present a
highly idiomatic, carefully tailored API that takes advantage of many
of the special features of the .NET runtime.

== Background ==
Lucene.Net, began as a independent project focused on creating a
line-by-line, API for API port of Java Lucene to C#. It continued
successfully in this way and eventually became a ASF Incubator project
in April of 2006 and graduated as a sub-project of Lucene in October
of 2009.

The last year has been challenging for the project. The committers who
originally lead the project have stopped maintaining it and
development has stagnated since June of 2010. The user community has
spoken out requesting a change in philosophy and direction for the
project, but those requests have been unheeded. This has led to a
number of forks outside of the ASF. We would like to bring those forks
back in as branches and be responsive to the needs of community
without the need for multiple non-ASF forks.

The Lucene PMC wants to see the project continue to thrive and has
indicated that a return to the Incubator is an appropriate step, with
the end goal of building a new team of committers and maintaining a
steady release cycle meeting the previously stated goals. Because
Lucene is working to move away from being an "umbrella project", a
long term goal of the Lucene.Net project is to graduate to an ASF TLP.

== Rationale ==
There is great need for a search engine library in the mode of Lucene
within the .NET runtime. Individuals naturally wish to code in their
language of choice. Organizations which do not have significant Java
expertise may not want to support Java strictly for the sake of
running a Lucene installation. Developers may want to take advantage
of C#'s unique language features and the .NET runtime's unique
execution and interoperability model. Lucene.Net will meet all these

Apache is a natural home for our project given the way it has always
operated: user-driven innovation, lively and amiable mailing list
discussions, strength through diversity, and so on. We feel
comfortable here, and we believe that we will become exemplary Apache

== Initial Goals (to be completed before Feb 2011) ==
 * Build a new list of committers
 * Make a 2.9.2 compatible release as quickly as possible (this
already exists, it just needs to be packaged correctly)
 * Update website, documentation, etc.
 * Create a well documented repeatable and fully automated language
porting process
 * Start a ".NET style API" branch, either by incorporating some or
all existing fork projects or by starting a new branch to this end

== Current Status ==
=== Meritocracy ===
We understand meritocracy and will fully embrace this concept in our
project management methodology. One of the proposed committers, DIGY,
has been a committer on the current Lucene.Net project since November
2008. Prescott Nasser has been a contributor on the project,
submitting patches, documentation, and website enhancements. Three of
the other proposed initial committers, Troy Howard, Chris Currens and
Sergey Mirvoda are both already actively involved in other open source
projects, either as committers of code or in coordination roles. Troy,
Chris, Sergey and Prescott are currently committers on a Lucene.Net
fork known as Lucere, and as such are intimately familiar with the
code base and share a vision for the future direction of the project.
Scott Lombard and Michael Herndon are passionate about Lucene.Net as
well and have already contributed significantly in terms of project
organization and direction and discussions on the mailing list.

All of the proposed committers are familiar with the challenges faced
with starting and maintaining a project over time. We also understand
that opportunity is essential to an effective meritocracy and so will
remain transparent, open and actively engage the community to find new
contributors, include and review their contributions, and bring them
on as committers as appropriate.

=== Community ===
There is already a well established, active and vibrant community
surrounding the Lucene.Net project. This is primarily a users
community, as the previous committers have not engaged the user
community to find or leverage would-be contributors. There is a lot of
talent available in the community to this end and many people have
come forth offering their time as contributors.

There are a number of well established and significant .NET open
source projects which are widely used by the larger .NET community
which depend on Lucene.Net. There are also countless commercial
products which use, and are dependent on this project. The mailing
lists are active with numerous community members both asking and
answering technical questions. The status and activities of the
project are watched closely by the larger .NET development community
and regularly commented on in blogs and other discussion forums.

Because of the size of the community and the fact that it's audience
is largely developers, finding new committers over time should remain
an easy task. The user base is also constantly growing, because
Lucene.Net is one of the very few high quality products in this space
(either commercial or open source). The ability to index and search
content is an essential part of many web-based applications which are
developed on the .NET framework, and Lucene.Net is widely used to
support that scenario. This will only grow with time.

==== Community Projects and Commercial Products ====

A brief list of open source projects depending on Lucene.Net (alphabetical):

 * iReaper -
 * Linq to Lucene -
 * Lucandra.NET -
 * Mind``Touch - http://www DOT mindtouch DOT com/ (not sure why the
wiki disallows this)
 * Orchard -
 * RavenDB -
 * Sub``Text -
 * Umbraco -

A brief list of known commercial products using Lucene.Net (alphabetical):

 * Autodesk -
 * BBC UK Top Gear site -
 * Epro, Bluewire Technologies -
 * Intelli``Enterprise Intranet Suite -
 *, Black Duck Software -
 * Oxford Analytica -
 * Paradigm -
 * Power``Search -

There are of course many, many more.

==== Contributors ====

In addition to wide adoption of the existing code base, there has been
a strong interest from the community to contribute to the project.
Beyond the initial committers list of seven (7) people, the following
eight (8) people, who, despite being unable to fully commit to being
committers, have come forth and offered to be contributors on the
project (alphabetical):

 * Alex Thompson <pierogitus AT hotmail DOT com>
 * Ben Martz <benmartz AT gmail DOT com>
 * Frank Yu <frank DOT yu AT farpoint DOT com>
 * Glyn Darkin <glyn AT darkinsystems DOT com>
 * Peter Mateja <peter DOT mateja AT gmail DOT com>
 * Shashi Kant <skant AT sloan DOT mit DOT edu>
 * Simone Chiaretta <simone DOT chiaretta AT gmail DOT com>
 * Wyatt Barnett <wyatt DOT barnett AT gmail DOT com>
 * Karell Ste-Marie <stemarie AT brain-bank DOT com>

This strong basis of support (fifteen initial contributors), if
leveraged correctly, will represent a strong development team and
create a spirit of productivity in the community which will encourage
more contributors to appear and maintain the project.

=== Core Developers ===
The core developers are a diverse group of developers many of which
are already very experienced open source developers. Here are some
quick descriptions of the initial committers, their backgrounds and
qualifications (alphabetical):

==== Individuals ====
 * Chris Currens is a passionate developer who has worked on a number
of open source projects.

 * DIGY is one of the current committers on Lucene.Net and brings
extensive experience with this specifc codebase, as well as Java, C#
and other langauge knowledge.

 * Michael Herndon is the rare mix of a designer, software developer,
& tech lead thats has incorporated opensource software into both
commercial, educational (uva's
& government (saic's
[[|pathfinder]]  C#
version & updated logo/images which is still in use.) and has worked
on a few opensource projects including mitre's

 * Prescott Nasser is a product manager and lead software developer
focusing on back office workflow and process automation at a major US
financial institution.

 * Scott Lombard is an Automation Engineer who works in developing
applications to allow users to manage and understand data.  He has
worked implementing various open source projects in websites and
applications to show plant floor data.

 * Sergey Mirvoda is a skilled developer with a strong interest in
unit testing. He is a committer on the Lucere project.

 * Troy Howard is an experienced developer and software project
manager in the commercial world. He has founded and been a committer
on numerous open source projects over the years, including most
recently, Lucere, a fork of Lucene.Net which he hopes to integrate
back into the main project.

==== Groups  ====
 * Chris, Prescott, Sergey, and Troy are part of the core development
team on the Lucere project. They are eager to bring their passion for
Lucene.Net back to the main project, as well as integrate the Lucere
source into a new API for Lucene.Net.

 * Chris and Troy work together at their day jobs as well as having
worked together on two previous open source projects. They make a
solid and productive team no matter what project they are working on.

=== Alignment ===
Lucene.Net has been an ASF project since 2006 and has benefitted
greatly from that affiliation. We appreciate the careful oversight and
structure that Apache provides which ensures that the project stays on
track and productive. We also appreciate being associated with the
Lucene TLP and the sharing that provides.

Beyond that, a very practical concern is that we would like to
continue developing Lucene.Net with its current name. The project has
built a hard earned reputation, and leaving the ASF would mean a
forced rebranding and losing that reputation in the process. This
would not be good for the health of the project.

== Known Risks ==
=== Orphaned products ===
The purpose of this proposal is to recover from the fact that
Lucene.Net has been orphaned by its current list of committers. There
are numerous reasons why that happened, such as; Project vision not
aligned with community needs, Committers not taking advantage of
contributors in the community, Committers not being upfront about
their ability or interest in maintaining the project, Lack of effort
to incorporate new committers from the community or engage
non-committers in the development process, Abandonment by
commercially-focused committers .

Because we will be coming from the perspective of recovering from
orphaning, we will be strongly focused on building a community, team
of committers, and process to ensure our long term stability. We will
learn from the past and not repeat the mistakes of our predecessors.

Beyond that, there is significant commercial interest in this project
which we believe can be converted to direct support in terms of
on-the-clock work by developers working for companies that have
software products which rely on Lucene.Net. The initial committers
list includes two such developers and we hope to attract more of them.
Because we understand that commercial support of this nature can be
fickle, we will also ensure that the team remains diversified and seek
out committers who are personally motivated.

We also hope to incorporate the three existing forks of Lucene.Net
back into this project. Doing so would bring a large body of reliable
committers and contributors into the fold of this project (Lucere has
more than 10 active committers, Lucille and Aimee.Net are one-man
projects, both of which are very committed individuals).

=== Inexperience with Open Source ===
The core developers all have significant experience with open source
development. We recognize that we lack PMC experience and seek to
address that deficiency by using the Incubator environment to educate
ourselves and prepare for responsible self-governance.

=== Homogenous Developers ===
Our community is geographically dispersed, with members in many areas
of the USA, Canada, Russia, UK, and other countries. We all work for
different organizations.

=== Reliance on Salaried Developers ===
We incorporate both salaried and non-salaried developers, from
multiple organizations. We feel this gives us the best of both worlds
and will increase our viability as a long-term project.

=== Relationships with Other Apache Products ===
Lucene.Net's relationship with the Lucene TLP has been relatively
unidirectional until now. Lucene.Net has simply been porting the Java
Lucene code to C# using automated methods. We hope to change that and
feed-back more into the Java Lucene community both on the conceptual
level and in terms of API changes that we make. We have an interest in
possibly integrating the work of the Lucy project into Lucene.Net at
some point as well. There is also a strong interest in creating .NET
ports of ASF's Solr, Tika, Hadoop, and others. While that would fall
outside of the scope of this project, there may be overlap in terms of
the committers between those projects and sharing of code and
methodologies pioneered in the Lucene.Net project.

=== An Excessive Fascination with the Apache Brand ===
Our desire to maintain Lucene.Net's affiliation with Apache has less
to do with the brand and more to do with our conviction that
developing the project 'The Apache Way' under Apache institutions is
in Lucene.Net's best interests. However, we have to acknowledge that
during its time as a Lucene subproject, Lucene.Net has not always
fulfilled certain key requirements for an Apache project. In
particular, it has failed to "release early, release often". Also,
despite making significant progress in expanding its user community,
it has failed to engage with the community and remain responsive to
community needs.

By rebooting the project with a new list of motivated and enthusiastic
committers, we expect to avoid the trap that ensnared Lucene.Net's
first incarnation: we will release early, release often, accumulate
users, nurture contributors, and grow our community.

== Documentation ==
 * Current Lucene.Net website:
 * Current Lucene.Net Subversion repository:
 * Current Lucene.Net mailing lists: (See info under "Mailing Lists"

== Initial Source ==
We will continue working with the existing Lucene.Net codebase located

We will also attempt to contact the coordinators of the following
Lucene.Net forks and incorporate their work into the Lucene.Net

 * Lucere -
 * Lucille -
 * Aimee.Net -

== Source and Intellectual Property Submission Plan ==
All source code referred to in this project (existing codebase and
that of forks) is already licensed under the Apache 2.0 License. There
should be no conflicts in this regard.

== External Dependencies ==
The only external dependencies represented in any of the proposed code
are on unit testing and mocking frameworks, all of which have ASF
compatible licenses.

== Required Resources ==
=== Mailing lists ===
 * lucene-net-dev
 * lucene-net-commits
 * lucene-net-users

Lucene.Net already has lucene-net-dev, lucene-net-users, and
lucene-net-commits mailing lists under While these
could be deactivated and the memberships migrated to the appropriate
lists under, leaving the
archives as read-only, we would prefer to keep the mailing lists the
same, rather than moving to The purpose of that
would be to remain engaged with our community, with minimal

=== Subversion Directory ===
Lucene.Net already has a Subversion directory at In keeping with
naming conventions, it could be moved to

=== Issue Tracking ===
Lucene.Net already has a JIRA tracker: Lucene.Net (LUCENENET)

=== Other Resources ===
Lucene.Net already has a MoinMoin wiki at It can be moved to
standard Incubator wiki placement. There is currently no content of
value in the wiki.

== Initial Committers ==
||'''Name''' ||'''Email''' ||'''CLA''' ||
||Chris Currens ||currens.chris AT gmail DOT com ||Yes ||
||DIGY ||digydigy AT gmail DOT com ||Yes ||
||Michael Herndon ||mherndon AT wickedsoftware DOT net ||Yes ||
||Prescott Nasser ||prescott.nasser AT hotmail DOT com ||Yes ||
||Scott Lombard ||lombardenator AT gmail DOT com ||Yes ||
||Sergey Mirvoda ||sergey AT mirvoda DOT com ||Yes ||
||Troy Howard ||thoward37 AT gmail DOT com ||Yes ||

== Affiliations ==
 * Troy Howard and Chris Currens both work for discover-e Legal, LLC
and will work on Lucene.Net as part of their paid work. discover-e
Legal uses the current Lucene.Net build in their products and so, has
a vested interest in seeing the project continue. Beyond that, the
reason Lucene.Net was chosen by Troy initially for the discover-e
Legal products is due to his strong interest in the project. This
interest was well established before working for discover-e Legal, and
is independent of its needs. The same is true for Chris Currens. So,
even though there is commercial support for their work on this project
it is not the primary reason or motivator for their interest.

== Sponsors ==
=== Champion ===
 * Grant Ingersoll (gsingers AT apache DOT org)

=== Nominated Mentors ===
 * Gianugo Rabellino
 * Stefan Bodewig
 * Benson Margulies

=== Sponsoring Entity ===
'''Lucene.Net is currently sponsored by Lucene as a sub-project. This
proposal advocates changing Lucene.Net's relationship with Apache from
existing as a Lucene sub-project, to existing under the sponsorship of
the Incubator. '''

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