[Incubator] New Application: GeoToolkit

Adrian Custer acuster at gmail.com
Tue May 26 06:33:53 EDT 2009

On Tue, 2009-05-26 at 05:51 -0400, Daniel Morissette wrote:
> "...every large scale free software project...", Really?
> Perhaps some concrete examples of well-known large scale projects based 
> on DVCS could help us see the light.

I believe my sentence continues "...of which I am aware...".

Linux, Java, Python, Gnome, Eclipse, OpenSSO, Metro, Glassfish, which
are the projects which I either follow intensely, in which I am
personally involved, or of whose policy I am directly aware, are all
moving this way or have already done so. Google code and Sourceforge now
both offer DVCS's as tools. In my opinion, a wave is sweeping over us
and I have no doubt that everyone is headed towards working this way.
Even the Subversion coders post their belief that SVN will be the last
centralized source code versioning system ever written.

> Finally, Paul raised an important *practical* question yesterday that is 
> not clear to me either. 

Yes and my burlesque answer to him was hilarious but not publishable
publicly, lest it offend when no offence was meant. 

> Since what matters to the users of a project is 
> the official release posted on the website and the binaries derived from 
> it, how does a DVCS-driven project work with respect to official 
> releases? 

In the case of Gnome, twice a year we all get off our duff and upload
the best we got during the upload windows. That is, many different
repositories pitch in to make the release. This was true in the SVN days
and will remain true in these days of Git. I know that Eclipse works in
a similar way, with each sub-project getting into the swing of things,
and uploading their betas and final bundles during the summer release

I could well imagine that we end up with such a system in Geotoolkit.
Today, Martin and Johann each control a repo, 'base' and 'pending'
respectively and I imagine they will coordinate something come the
beginning of next month. In the future, Axel and I might add our
geometry work into the release train. For non-essential modules, this
would be a wonderful way to work, with any interested party joining us
during the release train yet mastering their own destiny. Maven lets
third party developers use only what they want from what is released.

However, I am not sure what our system will look like at the end, only
certain that releases do not *necessarily* need to be made from one
blessed repository that holds all the code for the project. Just as
there is no single system of project governance that could fit all
projects, there is no single release policy that necessarily works for

> If the official release ends up being what the dictator chose 
> to approve then how is that different from a centralized SVN/CVS server? 
> We just end up with a person as a central point of control instead of a 
> server, don't we?

If that is all you can imagine, then yes you have only reimagined SVN
using a DVCS. 


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