Friday, March 21, 2008

Why people hate Tapestry (or even Howard)

Recently I've seen quite some people expressing their hatred towards Tapestry or Howard (eg, on theServerSide, on the Tapestry mailing list, blogs). Admittedly I made a mistake by recommending Tapestry to quite some people and organizations in Macau and now they're stuck with T4, however, objectively speaking, it is not the fault of Howard or Tapestry. Every one of us should take the responsibility for carefully evaluating any given technology before adoption, including its track record of compatibility and etc.

After all, all Howard did was to release his code for others to use for free under the Apache license. Presumably this is good will. In addition the Apache license clearly says there is no warranty of any kind. It's up to us to decide to use it or not. Sure, Howard might have made promises that he might be unable to meet ("This should finally crack the backwards compatibility nut, allowing you to have great assurance that you can upgrade to future releases of Tapestry without breaking your existing applications."). But everyone is entitled to publish his own objective and there is simply no guarantee that it will be realized. I guess some people are angry because they think they were tricked. However, I still think it is the responsibility of the technology evaluator to look for facts, not promises. There is no way to tell whether someone is lying or just wishful thinking. Ultimately, we are free to adopt something or not and it is our sole responsibility, be it commercial or open source.

Why is this an imporant issue? We, technology evaluators, must recognize our own mistakes in order to avoid repeating it in the future.