[fxruby-users] Moving On

Lyle Johnson lyle at lylejohnson.name
Wed Aug 4 10:20:54 EDT 2010

Cross-posted to the blog (at

When Jamis Buck wrote last year about ceasing development on
Capistrano, his post really struck a chord with me. If this post
reminds you of that one, it's because I re-read it before sitting down
to compose this one. It was the next best thing to having Jamis on
hand to give me a pep talk before I had to stand up and say something
that I've been putting off saying for too long. As a bonus, I could
visualize him calmly and quietly making one of those neat little
string figures while I tried decide exactly what it was I wanted to

It is with mixed feelings that I announce that I'm stepping away from
FXRuby development, effective immediately. I will no longer be
accepting bug reports, support requests, feature requests, or general
emails related to FXRuby. I will continue to follow the mailing list,
but I am no longer the maintainer of this project.

When I started developing FXRuby back in late 2000, it was a lot of
fun for me. I was still new to Ruby (most of us were, back then) and
Ruby was in need of a good GUI toolkit, so working on FXRuby provided
me with not only a good way to learn the ins and outs of the language,
but also to get really plugged into the community. In recent years,
however, working on FXRuby has become a chore. I'm a decade older, at
a different place in my life and career, and there are frankly just
too many other things that I'd rather be working on at this point.
These feelings are compounded by the fact that FOX development has, as
best I can tell, stalled out, and without anything new to look forward
to on the FOX front there's little motivation for me to continue
working on FXRuby. So it's time to make a clean break and call it

I would like to take this opportunity to thank everyone who did
participate in the FXRuby community over the years. Knowing that you
found my work of some value means a lot to me, and I appreciate the
encouragement that I received from you along the way. I was never
successful at organizing a development team around FXRuby, something
which I regret, but a number of people contributed patches or
third-party tools and extensions to FXRuby. If I tried to name all of
those contributors, I would invariably leave someone off the list by
accident, so let me just say: Thanks, you guys; you know who you are.
A special thanks as well to those of you who bought the book. And of
course, I owe an immense debt of gratitude to Jeroen van der Zijp,
without whom there would be no FOX toolkit, and thus no FXRuby.

Someone on the mailing list asked whether FOX and FXRuby are "pretty
much dead." I can't speak for Jeroen or the FOX project. As for
FXRuby, however, that's up to you. FXRuby is, and always has been, an
open source project. If you are interested in hacking on FXRuby, or
even taking over maintenance of the project, please feel free to fork
the project on GitHub (http://github.com/lylejohnson/fxruby) and
release updates as you see fit. The Wiki
(http://wiki.github.com/lylejohnson/fxruby/) has a lot of information
about setting up a development and build environment on Windows, Linux
and Mac OS X, and if you have specific questions about the build chain
I'll do my best to help you get set up.

If no one steps forward to maintain FXRuby, that’s fine too. The code
has been pretty stable, if not bug-free, for quite awhile now, and it
may the case that the code's "done" anyways. If you feel that way and
want to continue using FXRuby, it's not going anywhere. If on the
other hand, you have some fresh new ideas about how to move ahead, go
for it! I will be cheering you on from the sidelines.

In closing, thanks again for all of your support over the last ten
years. I'm certainly not done with Ruby, and I'm looking forward to
exploring other ways in which I can participate in the Ruby community
in the future.

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