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From Benjamin Reed <br...@yahoo-inc.com>
Subject Re: Begin a discussion about ZooKeeper as a top level project
Date Tue, 23 Mar 2010 00:07:38 GMT
pat, i think you articulated well the problems with becoming a TLP. you 
don't seem to have voted for one of the options though :)

i guess my view corresponds to option 2). it does seem like a good idea 
in the long term for ZooKeeper to become its own project, but for the 
near term, for the reasons you've enumerated, i think would should 
remain under hadoop. btw, i think the diverse developer community is the 
most problematic. i think we should stick with apache rules and make 
sure that we have active committers from at least 3 different 
organizations. i think it is an important milestone.


On 03/22/2010 11:32 AM, Patrick Hunt wrote:
> You have probably heard by now that there is a discussion going on in
> the Hadoop PMC as to whether a number of the subprojects (Hbase, Avro,
> Zookeeper, Hive, and Pig) should move out from under the Hadoop
> umbrella and become top level Apache projects (TLP). This discussion
> has picked up recently since the Apache board has clearly communicated
> to the Hadoop PMC that it is concerned that Hadoop is acting as an
> umbrella project with many disjoint subprojects underneath it. They
> are concerned that this gives Apache little insight into the health
> and happenings of the subproject communities which in turn means
> Apache cannot properly mentor those communities.
> The purpose of this email is to start a discussion within the
> ZooKeeper community about this topic. Let me cover first what becoming
> TLP would mean for ZooKeeper, and then I'll go into what options I
> think we as a community have.
> Becoming a TLP would mean that ZooKeeper would itself have a PMC that
> would report directly to the Apache board. Who would be on the PMC
> would be something we as a community would need to decide. Common
> options would be to say all active committers are on the PMC, or all
> active committers who have been a committer for at least a year. We
> would also need to elect a chair of the PMC. This lucky person would
> have no additional power, but would have the additional responsibility
> of writing quarterly reports on ZooKeeper's status for Apache board
> meetings, as well as coordinating with Apache to get accounts for new
> committers, etc. We currently submit these same reports, however they
> are forwarded to the board through the Hadoop PMC Chair. For more
> information see
> http://www.apache.org/foundation/how-it-works.html#roles
> Becoming a TLP would not mean that we are ostracized from the Hadoop
> community. We would continue to be invited to Hadoop Summits, HUGs,
> etc.
> I see three ways that we as a community can respond to this:
> 1) Say yes, we want to be a TLP now.
> 2) Say yes, we want to be a TLP, but not yet. We feel we need more
> time to mature. If we choose this option we need to be able to clearly
> articulate how much time we need and what we hope to see change in
> that time.
> 3) Say no, we feel the benefits for us staying with Hadoop outweigh
> the drawbacks of being a disjoint subproject. If we choose this, we
> need to be able to say exactly what those benefits are and why we feel
> they will be compromised by leaving the Hadoop project.
> There may other options that I haven't thought of. Please feel free to
> suggest any you think of.
> Here are the thoughts I've formed so far on the subject:
> Benefits of moving to TLP:
> a) Here's the boards view as communicated to me:
> "we're looking to ensure that proper and effective oversight is
>     reached, and umbrellas can get in the way of that. If you *also* think
>     that all of your communities have proper oversight, and that you're
>     communicating enough about each/all of them to the Board, so that *it*
>     can provide oversight, then that's just fine. Go do the review and
>     come back and say, "we're all good. no changes are necessary.""
> b) setting our own course - we would have our own PMC and therefore
> have more latitude (within the apache rules of course) in setting
> direction. PMC members would be focused on ZooKeeper exclusively.
> Serious reservations I personally have with a move to TLP today:
> a) I do not think ZooKeeper currently has a sufficiently large and
> diverse enough community such that it can fend for itself as a
> TLP. Our community is working hard to establish a critical mass, given
> our maturity level, complexity of code, and the stakes involved (ZK is
> literally the linchpin of many of our user's computing
> infrastructures) it has been hard to attract/promote developers. We
> currently have 5 active committers, 4 from one company and 1 from
> a separate one (who only recently joined the committer ranks). The
> board has stated they are willing to break their own rules here (form
> a TLP with less than acceptable diversity) however I don't believe that
> would be prudent from our perspective.
> b) Loss of branding and discover-ability - "in the land of the cloud
> the elephant is king". IMO being associated with Hadoop is a huge win
> for us in terms of branding and discover-ability. This is similar to
> the benefits we get of being an Apache project. People who are serious
> about the cloud need to look at Hadoop. In the process they discover
> ZooKeeper.
> c) "if ain't broke don't fix it". I have frequent interactions with
> Hadoop PMC/Chair and an Apache board member. We are getting excellent
> representation through this process and I don't see how visibility
> "up" or support "down" could be improved.
> Questions? Thoughts? Rebuttal? Let the discussion begin.
> Patrick

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