[Ironruby-core] "Start spreading the news"

Jim Deville jdeville at microsoft.com
Sat Aug 7 19:07:24 EDT 2010

I guess I never really sent the mail that I meant to send about my progression.

Similar to Jimmy, I've also made the incredibly hard decision to move on as well. I've been working on the JavaScript team now for about 2 weeks. I've made this decision for many of the same reasons as Jimmy, but for various personal reasons, I decided to remain with MS instead of leaving. I will still be working with IronRuby, it just won't be my primary function anymore.  I also had a wonderful time on the team, and I will really miss working directly with them.

I agree that IronRuby is not a big community, but I don't know that it is a problem unless we let it be one :). I also feel that MS owning the code isn't a problem. It's not like it really benefits anyone inside of MS, it benefits us, the users :). It also benefits the Ruby community at large if we continue to make IronRuby a great product that people want to use in their .NET applications, because it shows people Ruby :)

I understand that this is sad, and for some, expected :(, but I hope that people still continue doing the awesome things people have been doing :)


From: ironruby-core-bounces at rubyforge.org [mailto:ironruby-core-bounces at rubyforge.org] On Behalf Of Orion Edwards
Sent: Sunday, August 08, 2010 2:43 PM
To: ironruby-core at rubyforge.org
Subject: [Ironruby-core] "Start spreading the news"

I'm sure most of you have seen this already, but I hadn't seen Jimmy's "farewell Microsoft" blog post posted to the list, so here it is if anyone hasn't read it


I'd like to thank Jimmy for his work thus far on IronRuby, and certainly wish you the best of luck at your new job and living in NYC. From that point of view, it's happy days.

The news about Microsoft's internal handling of IronRuby however makes me rather sad, and frankly a bit worried about the future of IronRuby in general. If there's now only 2 part-time developers working on IR inside Microsoft, and they've been told not to develop any new features, then where does that leave us?

While IronRuby is open source (yay), It unfortunately hasn't seem to have become quite big enough (unlike JRuby) to be self sustaining.

I personally also perceive somewhat of a problem, in that (again, unlike with JRuby) Microsoft "owns" IronRuby. Last I knew, committers still had to sign a copyright assignment form to MS, and MS controls all the repositories and other assorted stuff. (AFAIK Charles has personally controlled all the JRuby repos since day one and still does).
This provides a LARGE (to me at least) disincentive to contribute to IronRuby in the future. Because MS owns IronRuby, I feel like if I were to commit code, it would not be for the benefit of a nice friendly community-driven open source group, it would be for the benefit of Microsoft Corporation.
I was happy to accept this when MS were putting a lot of work into IronRuby, but now that they're not, my feeling is "So Microsoft have bailed and left us hanging, why on earth would I want to do work on their behalf after they've just done that?"

At any rate, I've not committed any code to IronRuby (I've come close several times, but never just had the time) so my opinion is largely irrelevant, I just hope that other potential committers with more time and skill than I don't end up feeling this way too :-(
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