Moving towards resignation

Faré fahree at
Tue Jan 12 09:44:14 UTC 2016

Dear Robert,

I thank you for all the hard work you've put as ASDF maintainer, and I
apologize for making it unnecessarily harder.

Since I resigned from ASDF maintainership, I have nevertheless pushed
upon you this test infrastructure that I had already started before I
resigned, but that indeed seems to only be stable in the limited
environments that I've been using it. I've kept taking the liberties
of a maintainer while relinquishing the responsibilities on you, and
that was unfair. For that, I apologize again.

I've worked today towards fixing the issues you've hit, but this is of
course not an ongoing solution. Dumping my asdf-tools efforts to
restore the old Makefile and bash script would certainly make me
unhappy, but it is certainly your prerogative as maintainer, or the
prerogative of whoever would replace you. Maintaining the two
infrastructures at once is also an option in the short run, though in
the long run it's a worst-of-both-world in terms of maintenance costs.

Now that I'm not paid to write Common Lisp code anymore, I'm not as
motivated to further its development. I am still using it as a
scripting platform, and wanted to maintain that part working; but my
main drive with respect to ASDF was to not leave unfinished business.
With the syntax-control branch untouched for years, the minimakefile
branch being merged in but not making you happy, the
obsolete-function-warnings branch being young and unlikely to mature,
and the defsystem-depends-on issue suggesting another round of big
refactorings, I realize that there is no way the business will be
finished any time soon, and I just don't have the motivation to do it

So, maybe I should just call it quits and stop putting pressure on
you. Please delete or disable the whole thing (I would of course
prefer not deleting). If on the other hand, you just want to resign,
then please leave it for the next maintainer to decide: I'm ready to
take over as temporary maintainer until someone steps up who wants to
move forward.

The ideal solution would of course be for young blood to take over
from the two of us, but I don't see that happening. Common Lisp is not
very welcoming nor attractive to new blood.

—♯ƒ • François-René ÐVB Rideau •Reflection&Cybernethics•
Yesterday I was clever, so I wanted to change the world.
Today I am wise, so I am changing myself. — Rumi (1207–1273)

On Mon, Jan 11, 2016 at 9:38 AM, Robert Goldman <rpgoldman at> wrote:
> I am now very unhappy with my role as maintainer.
> Over my repeated expressions of concern, the minimakefile -- which aims
> to replace normal shell tools with CL-based scripting facilities -- has
> been merged with core ASDF.
> Since then, almost all of my ASDF-related time has gone into wrestling
> with said scripting facilities.
> I don't mind if people think it's cool to try to make a CL scripting
> facility.  But it's not my thing.  I just want my tools to work.  The CL
> scripting facility is, IMO, at an "alpha" level in which it works
> acceptably in the developer's environment, but can be expected to hiccup
> seriously anywhere else.
> I don't want to fight it any more.
> So I'm offering the community two choices:
> 1.  I "un-merge" the minimakefile facilities and go back to vanilla CL
> and the standard Unix toolkit for maintenance.
> 2. Someone emerges to take over the maintenance of ASDF in its current
> shape, and I go back to being a simple contributor.
> I barely have enough time to keep up my responsibilities as maintainer;
> I simply don't have the time to maintain cl-launch, cl-scripting, yadda
> yadda yadda, as well as ASDF.  Even if I did, I wouldn't want to,
> because this is not a direction that interests me personally.  I don't
> say it's a wrong direction, just that it's not my thing.
> Fare likes this structure, and he is still the master of ASDF.  Me
> handing off ASDF is more survivable than driving Fare away.  So I
> believe that finding a maintainer who is intrigued by the new direction,
> and enjoys moving it forward, is a better choice than going back and
> ripping out the new framework (in retrospect, we should have *added* the
> new scripting facilities, rather than *replacing* the old).  So consider
> this a call for my replacement.
> It's been an interesting ride, and I have learned a lot in the process,
> but it's probably time for someone else, who's more motivated by the new
> infrastructure.
> Best,
> R

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