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From Zach Hodges <>
Subject Thoughts around the direction of Ace
Date Wed, 11 Jan 2017 01:52:11 GMT
Hello All,
First let me say that I'm very impressed with the Ace project and it's
goals.  I've been following it for a year or two now.  I've unfortunately
not been able to use it in production yet as I've been waiting for it to
evolve a little more in certain aspects.  The comments about the project
being in relatively in maintenance mode has sparked me to send a note that
I've been meaning to send for a while.

I think what would help take this project to the next level would be a
little more focus on the user experience of packaging, deploying and
managing an OSGi system, and potentially delegating some of the heavy
lifting around deployment scheduling to other complementary systems.

For example, if the user interface was a little more task oriented and
maybe a few key use cases could be targeted and optimized.  Possibly the
"distribution building" task.  I feel like bundles and features are more of
a developer responsibility, but creating a distribution and assigning it to
a target is more of a deployer task.  Ace feels more like a platform to be
used by a deployer role.

Also, potentially more integrations with existing deployment infrastructure
could be developed (i.e. use HashiCorp's Nomad for the target agent to
schedule the actual deployment on the node, or build integration with
openshift, kubernetes, docker, fabric8, etc).  If existing platforms could
be leveraged, you can reduce the need to recreate that wheel, and gain
share in existing marketplaces.  One of the great things about the osgi
model, and particularly the requirements / capabilities model is being able
to express these dependencies in the packaging.  It seems they've been
envisioned to encompass ideas such as operating system, memory, installed
libraries and application server components, etc.  but I have not seen a
platform take advantage of this potential metadata (at least in the open
source world).

I hope to be able to contribute more than just words.  I need to figure out
whether or not I can sign a CLA.  I have developed several applications
using osgi, vaadin and bndtools in the last several years so I feel like I
could help where needed.

But in the meantime, I did want to share a few mock-ups I created back in
2015.  I hope their relatively self-explanatory and maybe are inspirational.

Thanks for everyone's hard work!

attached: HomePage.png, PackagePage.png, TargetsPage.png

- Zach Hodges

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