[GRASS5] Splitting GRASS 5 into stable and unstable

Markus Neteler neteler at geog.uni-hannover.de
Tue May 9 13:14:53 EDT 2000

Hi developers,

thanks Eric for your comments. As being far away from a
CVS expert, I am very interested in comments!

It seems we have to judge if we the planned updates
are significant changes in structure or not.

What I expect to be updated soon is (I hope it will happen):

 (1) better/new makefile support:
      - auto-conf fully applied
      - split GRASS into thematic modules which could be downloaded 
        and added to "GRASS-Core" on demand could be feasible
      - using shared libs (*if* recommended)
      - the make process should ignore missing modules to
        support GRASS modularity (in case the user downloads only
        part of the code)

 (2) new XDRIVER2:
      - layer technology
      - socket support instead of fifos (to run faster and optionally
        on Windows platforms)

 (3) clusterGRASS:
      - in case someone wants to improve/rewrite parts of
        GRASS to allow parallel computing: is it an own
        project or can it be done within the standard
        package (checked by auto-conf)?

Eric, as you are working on "auto-conf" support: Does it require significant
structural changes or not? In case we apply your patches directly, do we get 
it stable soon (say: one or two month)? Is a new internal structure required
or updates only?

Concerning the proposed GRASS modularity:
I guess some of you know "R": They provide so-called third party
extensions which can be easily included. The local documents are
updated automatically with all cross references etc. It is quite
nice: http://cran.at.r-project.org/

This is more the bazaar type than cathedral... (well, this discussion
is another topic).

The short history of GRASS 5 was mainly updating, bugfixing and
prototyping. Now it will be time to go for above changes.

To conclude: In case we can apply above improvements, to you
think we have significant changes? If not, we may not need
a new parallel version and/or branches.

Hoping for further comments

 Markus Neteler

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