I loved working with JSC, but to be honest it had some serious drawbacks:
- There was no real IDE support.
- No type checker, types are just remarks used for API documentation.
- Bugs and request were not fairly tracked and never really tackled.
- No class dependencies or automatic class loading: each class file had to be listed, and even in the right sequence before all its depending classes.
Time for a ChangeCoreMedia went through some changes, which opened up new possiblities. We evolved to a learning company, where all members are given time for "peer group" work, i.e. work in small groups of people who pursue a common goal and handle a topic of individual choice. Luckily, I found fellows who were, like me, interested in reanimating JSC. The new spirit and transparency of our company was the perfect breeding ground for the idea to release JSC to the public, as Open Source. It was the perfect candidate:
- En vogue topic.
- Focussed, general purpose tool.
- Not too big to handle.
- Nothing anyone would want to sell: development tools are hard to sell, anyway, and these are not our company's focus.
- We had to document and clean up, anyway, so hardly any additional cost.
We were overcoming most disadvantages of JSC. In other words, we had even more to offer than what we had used successfully as an internal tool for years.
Walking the TalkIn the execution phase, Masiar Bostanipoor (Web site) and Dennis Homann (build infrastructure, tutorial) joined the team. Andreas and Olaf rounded off compiler (now coherently called jooc) and runtime (where I helped a bit). Olaf wrote most of the language and compiler documentation. Kudos to numerous CoreMedians who helped us with the project, in no particular order and surely not complete: Thomas Stegmann, Gunnar Klauberg, Uli Henningsen, Tobias Baier, Jan Brauer, Carsten Böttcher, Stefanie Wegener, and Christian Pesch.
We used the project time CoreMedia granted us mainly to come up with a stable infrastructure and an appealing presentation (at least we hope so), not to create more tools. We got the domain jangaroo.net, created a Web home for Jangaroo, started this blog, wrote documentation, set up a proper build process involving a Maven repository, cared about license issues (German license jurisdiction is a nightmare!), and so on. Of course, some infrastructure is still missing, most importantly a forum and a bug tracker -- we are working on that, please bear with us! Until then, please comment in this blog for public discussions, and e-mail for direct communication. We also have a twitter user Jangaroo, feel free to follow if you like! Many of the tools and libraries mentioned here may follow jooc, so stay tuned!
I hope you have enjoyed hearing about Jangaroo's first life as JSC and its rebirth as an Open Source project. What I described is just the way I personally remember and feel about things. In the future, be prepared to find a bit more technological facts in my postings...