Tuesday, December 02, 2008

OpenBD Status

Back in the mid November time frame a kind feller asked about the status of OpenBD, also suggesting maybe we the Steering Committee post a short little summary. Alan kindly responded and made him aware of how the project is doing, which is fantastic. I've been busy so I didn't even read the email until about 10 minutes ago. About a month ago I was also invited to speak at Mid Michigan's CFUG (note this as also my last entry b/c I have been so busy) and a similar sentiment was conveyed. I was told that OpenBD has some cool features and we really should be talking about it more. Now with these 2 bits of information bopping around in my head I decided maybe now is a good time to talk, give my personal explanation about my silence about OpenBD and a quick update about OpenBD's status.

After CFunited and the rather subtle (or not so sublte) slap in the face from Adobe, not being involed/invited to participate in the CFML advisory committee (nor even told that there would be one and this is why you are not being invited), I went back and reread many posts about OpenBD's announcement, as well as Railo's. I felt part of the problem has been the perception of OpenBD trying to steal away or otherwise fragment the ColdFusion community. I understand that sentiment due to the association with New Atlanta and I don't hold it against anyone for not involving OpenBD. I personally felt constantly coming to the community and pushing OpenBD and publishing constant updates would come off wrong, just another attempt to steal ColdFusion people yada yada yada. I care about the community a lot and I also care about every's opinion of me (to an extent) and I did not want to rub people the wrong way or give folks fodder to rally against OpenBD. This is one reason I have been fairly reserve about OpenBD on my blog. Also at the end of the day the ColdFusion/CFML community is but one community OpenBD seeks to help and it really is the least important to evangelise to, you are already using CFML!* Since the vast majority of my blog readership is ColdFusion developers I think it is a pretty bad medium for me to get the word out about OpenBD. Instead I have engaged people personally, and even evangelised at user groups outside of the ColdFusion community (anyone at bFusion might recall some very boring slides about ColdFusion the platform, those were in there to introduce people to the ColdFusion product). I think maybe I have gone too much to the extreme and now maybe OpenBD comes off as a dead project to some or a project that completely doesn't give a crap about the ColdFusion community. Neither are the case I will attempt to strike a balance of providing the appropriate amount of info in the future. Always though, if you are interesting in OpenBD please ask, I am more than happy to take time to talk to you or a group of you. Heck if you know of a user group that is not ColdFusion/CFML that might be open to seeing other technologies please send me their way or send them mine.

(*I think it is very important to be clear that when it comes to features and evolution of OpenBD I very much care about the CFML community's opinion, we understand the language/platforms and have a good idea of what can be done to improve.)

Now the fun part, the status of OpenBD. The steering committee discussion board has been quite a buzz recently and with good reason. As some folks have already found, we have finally put up a wiki and content is rapidly being added. For now the wiki is PHP, it is MediaWiki. We chose MediaWiki for a very good reason it is one of the leading open source wiki software packages today. This alone is not enough, it is also happens that the OpenBD CFML wiki that we hope to release early next year is 100% compatible with MediaWiki. This wil be an entirely open source (GPLv3) CFML wiki engine that is feature complete and compatible with MediaWiki content. It's been in the works for a long time and Alan keeps wanting to add to it instead of finalize it and release it. In the upcoming months you will also be able to find a road map of OpenBD, as well as history about the legacy of dbServlet (the original engine that has evolved into OpenBD today).

<> And one more thing. We decided on a versioning schema and we set a date for the release. You will see an official v1.0 release of Open BlueDragon by the weeks end! It was, interestingly enough, a very hard decision to label OpenBD as v1.o. The engine itself has such a legacy and many, rightfully so, felt it was an unjustice to label such a mature product as v1.0. v1.0 has significances though, OpenBD is a new product. Yes the core has a long mature legacy but the name has a legacy too, not always a positive one either. We felt v1.0 was symbolic in a way; OpenBD is a new beginning. OpenBD is on its own now and it is at v1.0, we've all moved on and do not want to dwell on the past. I can not communicate it justly how hard it was for Alan and Andy to let go of the legacy and agree to v1.0 but they did because they too see the value and significances of what v1.0 means.

1 comment:

Chris Peters said...

You're right that BlueDragon has a bad rep in the community. Most of it is from New Atlanta coming across as used car salesmen.

Hopefully you guys can overcome that with awesomeness in the coming months. Good luck!