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From Alex Boisvert <>
Subject Re: dzone
Date Sat, 23 Jan 2010 17:25:55 GMT
Nice article.   The comments/reactions to buildr are always interesting.

If I can segway for a moment... The JVM build tool landscape has certainly
expanded much since buildr started.  There are more potent choices available
(e.g. Graddle and SBT).  Maven2 has fixed a lot of issues from its early
days.  And now Maven3 on the way... I think it gets more difficult to get
our message across because some of the alternatives may look similar on the
surface and may share some/many of the features.

For better or worse, a distinguishing feature of Buildr remains its ties to
Ruby.  Ruby is a great language with a rich ecosystem and a lively
culture.   It can also be perceived as 'another language to learn' or
'introducing yet-another language' into a project.  I'd rank these fears as
our biggest obstacle to popularity.  However, these fears are irrational and
as a small project I don't think there's much we can do to overcome them.

Beyond the language issue, I think our two most important challenges today
are 1) ease of installation and 2) a good story on dependency management.
We've gotten much better on the installation side recently and I hope the
all-in-one distro will help starting with Buildr 1.4.0.

On the dependency management side, I consider what we have today very
solid.  Whitelisting dependencies has worked very well for many of us on big
projects and is probably an under-appreciated feature.  It's hard to
communicate the value here without people having had bad experiences with
other transitive dependency management approach.  The seduction of
transitive dependencies is too great -- on paper it always works
perfectly.   So if there's one thing I'd like to improve after Buildr 1.4.0
it's our story on dependency management.   We need to communicate better but
also add better tooling support.  I think better/tigher integration with Ivy
would go a long way.   There's probably other good approaches out there and
I'd be interested in hearing about what other people  think.

My $0.02 on the buildr state of the union.  Thanks for the article!  Every
bit of advocacy helps.  Now if I could find some time to blog...


On Thu, Jan 21, 2010 at 12:37 AM, Peter Schröder <> wrote:

> hi,
> i posted a little article about buildr on dzone (
> i hope that it will create some attention for buildr to let the community
> grow further.
> kind regards,
> peter

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