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From Kevin Steppe <kste...@pacbell.net>
Subject Re: [POLL] Commercial documentation
Date Thu, 10 Jan 2002 20:31:37 GMT

I basicly agree with Jon on this one.  Documentation, like the current manual, I prefer to
see as part of the project.  However, a book on log4j -- how it works, how to modify it, etc
with more extensive code examples as such -- would certainly be something appropriate to do
for-profit outside of apache.  Take a look at the O'Reilly books and you'll see many examples
of that sort of thing.  If you
do decide to go down the book writting path, I can get you in touch with O'Reilly through
one of their current writers.

As for maintaining log4j I'm interested.  You've covered the list so well I figured you had
everything under control.  Tell me more about what is involved and what you spend time working
on for log4j and we can find a way to share the maintainence or shift it to me.


Ceki Gülcü wrote:

> At 19:14 10.01.2002 +0000, Jon Skeet wrote:
> >> I am pondering whether it is possible to earn revenue by offering
> >> log4j documentation online, a bit like what JBoss is trying to
> >> do. Needless to say, the log4j API (the software) will always be
> >> licensed under the Apache Software license and would include some
> >> basic documentation. However, writing good documentation is very time
> >> consuming and I'd like to see if I can get paid to do it.
> >>
> >> This documentation will be based on the long log4j manual which was
> >> until recently part of log4j 1.2 alpha3, alpha4 and alpha5. However,
> >> the latest alpha6 does not include it. This document carried a clearly
> >> visible copyright notice. It was always copyrighted by me and not the
> >> ASF.
> >>
> >> Do you think this is an honorable approach? Your comments on the
> >> subject are welcome. Thank you.
> >
> >I personally don't like the idea. It feels like it goes against the spirit of the
open source movement in general. I'd like to think that good documentation should come with
good software - the fact that it generally doesn't isn't a reason to follow that model.
> >
> >I rather suspect that if you go this way, others will write a good manual which *is*
open source and part of the kit/website. I would try to support such an effort, although I'm
in no way a technical writer. As the sole committer for the Log4j project you could, of course,
avoid putting it into CVS, but I feel that would splinter the project quite severely.
> >
> >I know it's nice to get money for things, and I'm in no way averse to writing code
for a living (otherwise I wouldn't do it), but I don't think it goes along with the spirit
of the rest of the project.
> >
> >I know that people *are* writing books for profit based on Ant, Struts etc, and see
no reason you shouldn't do this as well - but not by pulling decent documentation away from
Log4j leaving only minimal documentation in the project.
> I very much appreciate your comments. If I were in your seat, I'd probably say exactly
the same things but not as well.
> Avoiding splintering the project is extremely important. I would very much like to avoid
it, even if it means abandoning this idea and placing the long documentation back into the
log4j distribution.
> There are currently 6 committers whose vote count as much as mine. Clearly, I am not
the only one with commit capability. Even if I were, it would look extremely bad if I consistently
rejected patches to the open-source documentation.
> My aim is not to irritate everyone and to destroy the project. On the contrary, I would
like to spend more time working on log4j while keeping its existing good sprit.
> As I see it, log4j is a full time job. If anyone is willing to invest the kind of energy
that log4j demands then I would be willing to share responsibility or even let that person
or persons take over. At present time, I don't see it happening. For example, the longer manual
is copyrighted by me is because I actually wrote it alone. Obviously, I also decided not to
donate it to the ASF (yet!).
> Do you know any capable person who is willing to maintain or co-maintain the log4j API?
I am certainly willing to listen and share the work.
> Regards, Ceki
> --
> Ceki Gülcü - http://qos.ch
> --
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