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From Greg Reddin <gred...@gmail.com>
Subject DRAFT September Board Report
Date Tue, 15 Sep 2009 21:38:29 GMT
Here's my draft report for the September board meeting. Please offer comments.



We have made two releases this quarter. 2.1.3 is the latest GA
release.It is a bugfix release that includes a fix to a security
problem documented here:


We also release the first version of the 2.2.x series. Apache Tiles
2.2.0 is an alpha-quality release. This series adds several new
features, including:

 * Native support for Freemarker and Velocity
 * Support for pattern matching using regular expressions.
 * OGNL support and MVEL support in Tiles definition files, when
specifying attributes and templates.
 * Ready to use configuration classes to ease startup with minimal coding.

Additionally, 2.2.0 removes some backwards-compatibility features.
These features allowed Tiles to work with older architectures (Java
1.4/Servlet 2.4) that are no longer supported.


As I've noted in the past I am somewhat concerned about the stability
of the Tiles community. We have no trouble mustering up the votes
needed for releases. Development discussions continue to produce
multiple points of view. But the development and release work is still
performed by one PMC member. The truth of the matter is that if this
developer stopped working on Tiles there would be no further progress.
There is a healthy amount of traffic on the user list, but this
developer also answers the bulk of the questions there. So if he were
to leave the project and no one stepped up to take his place that
activity would come to a halt as well.

The rest of us are still interested in the project, but it does not
affect our daily work to the extent that we are compelled to
contribute in a concrete way. Speaking for myself, I've gotten so far
away from day-to-day development of Tiles that I can't even offer
intelligent responses to user questions anymore. This is not to say
that development continues unchecked. I'm still subscribed to the
commits and issues lists and I keep track of the traffic there.

It's my opinion that Tiles now lives in more of a niche market than it
once did. When Tiles was more tightly integrated with Struts it had a
lot more visibility. Most web developers who are still using Java MVC
web frameworks seem to be using frameworks that have more integrated
templating frameworks. Tiles is a standalone templating engine that is
not tied to a specific framework. Therefore it has less  visibility
than some of the others. There could also be the impression that Tiles
is largely "done" as far as new features are concerned and there's not
a whole lot of room for revolutionary innovation.

I do I believe that Tiles still offers some compelling features. This
is probably a point where a corporate project would be sundowned. As
long as there is still someone around to do the work and we still have
at the people to vet the releases I'm willing to continue supporting
the project. I don't see Tiles as a candidate for the Attic at this
time, but if development stops it may be in the future. At this time I
just felt it's important for the Board to be aware of our status. It's
worth noting that we have not made a significant effort to reach out
beyond our community to seek growth.

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