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From Bob Aiello <>
Subject Re: Refactoring the Maven Build
Date Tue, 09 Mar 2010 02:22:31 GMT
Hi Jesse (and everyone),

you are more than welcome to not go so easy on me. I am a hands-on 
process improvement guy with many years of experience as a build 
engineer and release manager. I am also the Editor in Chief at CM 
Crossroads ( where I write about topics related to 
configuration management including build engineering. I have worked with 
Ant, Make/GNU Make and MS Build along with Maven 1.0.2 and Maven 2.

I have been struggling to get my arms around Maven for some time now and 
wanted to make a concerted effort to get past my learning curve because 
it has become increasingly clear that Maven is the build tool of choice 
for Java applications. In my work, I have been asked several times to 
review existing Maven builds that had the problems that I described in 
the article. I did not create these problems. They were created by 
software developers who were, as you say, "a higher caliber maven user" 
than I am today.

I appreciate your comments which I am reviewing and I am glad to 
refactor my article on "Refactoring the Maven build", but I suspect that 
I am not the only person struggling to get up to speed with maven. 
Perhaps I am a little more daring because I am willing to publicly start 
the conversation. I would also suggest that Maven is tough for many 
people to master and it could be argued that we, as a community, could 
do a better job explaining the concepts and spreading the knowledge. I 
would like to be part of that effort.

So I will challenge you Jesse (and others) to share what you know (as 
you obviously do on this list) and also to help mentor the rest of us 
along. I will do my best to come up to speed as well and I can probably 
add some value by helping others along with their learning curve too. 
What other resources are there available for newbies to learn how to use 
Maven? I know of the PDF that we can all download and books published by 
O'Reilly and Packt. I have written a number of articles on Maven and 
will write lots more (which you are absolutely welcome to critique).

Feel free to send me your articles and I will get them published (that 
includes articles from other beginners who climbing the stairs with me).

I will always be delighted incorporate feedback and suggestions as I try 
to be the best that I can be.



On 3/8/2010 9:39 AM, Jesse Farinacci wrote:
> Hi Bob,
> On Mon, Mar 8, 2010 at 8:09 AM, Bob Aiello<>  wrote:
>> I just wrote an article on tactics for refactoring the Maven build and I
>> would love to get your input.
>> Feel free to post comments or send them to me privately.
>> Bob Aiello
>> Editor in Chief
>> CM Crossroads
>> raiello [at]
> Well, you seem to be a manager and not a technical developer, so I'll
> go easy on you. Your article is definitely filled with the right buzz
> words, they just don't seem to be used appropriately. The title,
> Refactoring the Maven Build, suggests that there will be some sort of
> detail provided on how to refactor the Maven pom.xml, but there aren't
> any details on this at all.
> Tip # 1 - Using help:effective-pom to diagnose problems is good
> Tip # 2 - Understanding what is going on in the build is generically useful
> Tip # 3 - Adding tracing to Maven itself isn't going to be useful to
> any reader unless you provide your changes, please do not
> Tip # 4 - Declaring dependencies in a clear and consistent way? What
> does this even mean? Being a correct, well-formed XML document will
> see to that..
> Tip # 5 - There's so much wrong in this one I don't know where to
> start ... please just delete it
> Tip # 6 - This is the likely result of your misunderstanding Maven,
> and switching the packaging type from jar to war without ever cleaning
> out the .m2/repo and/or without changing the artifact's version -
> tsk-tsk on you!
> Tip # 7 - Anyone that has written a plugin for Maven, even a
> HelloWorldMojo, is going to be of a higher caliber Maven user than
> you.. telling them to 'optimize' their plugins isn't at all valuable
> or useful
> Tip # 8 - Here, you seem to have digressed from the original thesis;
> are you speaking about a Maven Repository Manager? It's unclear, and
> worse still, you provide no details about what you're trying to fix,
> or how you recommend fixing it
> Tip # 9 - This is a non-issue if you are using well defined best
> practices for software development - by this I mean using actual
> versions and tagging your source code version control system
> appropriately during a release; any deployed artifact should be
> recreatable
> Tip # 10 - This seems like more buzz word jumbo, I'm not sure I see
> any tip here at all
> I'm sorry if I'm being harsh, but this really isn't going to be a
> valuable contribution. You don't even link to where you can get more
> information about Maven, or where much better resources may be found
> (e.g.
> )
> -Jesse

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