Before we “light out for the territories”, we thought we’d take a quick look back at an open source community in which we’ve spent a lot of time and learned a lot over the last several years–Eclipse.
We got involved in Eclipse back in 2003, long before Cloudsmith was started. We were developing Buckminster–the technology that helped put us on the road to Stack Hammer–and needed an open source community in which it could thrive. When we founded Cloudsmith, we decided to put as much of the technology we were developing into open source as we could and made a bigger bet on Eclipse. So we became strategic members and served on the board for several years, in addition to developing most of our foundational technology as open source at Eclipse.
To be honest, it wasn’t easy at first, since we were competing for mindshare in a community that was dominated by big companies like IBM. But it’s actually true that the community is merit-driven. Acceptance isn’t immediate, but if you have good ideas, produce good technology and are willing to contribute, you’ll earn your way in.
For us, the turning point was jumping into p2, Eclipse’s dependency management and provisioning framework created by a large team at IBM. Initially, it was seen as competitive with Buckminster, and to some extent it was. We pruned Buckminster in a few areas and started contributing major extensions to p2. After a few months, we were welcomed as the first active p2 committers outside IBM. (“Committer” is an Eclipse term for a core member of the project team.) And Buckminster continued to thrive.
Similarly, we helped the foundation automate the build of the first annual Eclipse release in 2007. By last summer, that system had evolved into the b3 aggregator, which is widely used throughout the Eclipse community, most visibly to assemble the work of roughly 500 committers and 40 separate projects into Eclipse’s official release-stream. Meanwhile, we’d spent lots of time facilitating Buckminster adoption, with over half of all active Eclipse projects (and nearly all of the roughly 30 or so modeling projects) building their contributions with Buckminster.
When Kenn Hussey, lead of the Model Development Tools project, joined the team full-time last year to run development (complementing Ed Merks, who’d been our “modeling guru/cons”), we added modeling to our portfolio of activities in the component build-assemble-deploy domain. This came in really handy when were looking for ways to abstract away dependencies between the server-side technologies in Stack Hammer and the GWT (Google Web Toolkit) technology we were using in our web interface. And so we ended up making major contributions to the Eclipse modeling core to support development of GWT applications and other RESTful web UIs.
And so after several years of hard work, which had made us kind of the “the dudes” in some really important technical domains at Eclipse, why have we been scaling back our involvement? Limited bandwidth and the need to focus, really. In order to spend more time using (and contributing to!) some new technologies, we have to cut back on the time we spend on Eclipse.
There’s still plenty of great Eclipse technology inside our service, and we’ll still be contributing as much as we can (i.e. still plenty) to those Eclipse technologies on which we or others depend. But to free up room to do something new, we have to cut back elsewhere.
Therefore, to all our past, current and future friends at Eclipse, it’s been great to meet you and has been/is/will be great to work with you! And we’re still here (maybe just a little less so).
- No public Twitter messages.
Chris Horn Co-founder & chairman
Founder and CEO of IONA Technologies, leading middleware/platform vendors of the ‘90s. Started IONA with two of my computer science grad students at Trinity College Dublin and bootstrapped all the way to a US IPO (first for an Irish tech company). Spend lots of time on Cloudsmith, plus a few other teams of ventures in the US and EU.Dublin, IrelandCurrent Temp:54 F°
Mitch Sonies Co-founder & CEO type
Consider myself the “idea guy”, but I’m totally dependent on the rest of the team to actually implement anything. Studied math, but went to law school. Started out as a venture lawyer, became a technology analyst on Wall St. Went into the software industry. Cloudsmith is my second startup. Did the first one with Henrik and Thomas as well.New York, United StatesCurrent Temp:65 F°
Thomas Halgren Co-founder and chief architect
Like to lay a foundation that will last a long long time. Earlier in my career I concentrated on O:R mapping and modeling frameworks and languages. Drifted into the build and provisioning domain. Have done a lot of the heavy lifting for the Eclipse community for several years. Began my career working for Henrik more than 20 years ago. He is now my wingman.Stockholm, SwedenCurrent Temp:52 F°
Henrik Lindberg Co-founder and CTO
I’ve been doing this a long time at many companies, startup to public, from operating system to application. Ran JRockit (Oracle’s JVM division) before Cloudsmith. Get most excited about newest stuff and hardest problems. Would solve every one with a Turing-complete language (plus an editor) if the team let me. Thomas is (still) my wingman.Stockholm, SwedenCurrent Temp:52 F°
Karel Březina Developer & architect
Joined the team with Filip. Michal, Filip and I were all CS students together in the Czech Republic. I’m a Java type, but I like working on the user interface more than the other guys. Michal is my squash partner; he hits harder but I win with superior tactics.Pilsen, Czech RepublicCurrent Temp:70 F°
Filip Hrbek Architect & developer
I’m the anchor of Cloudsmith/East. Met the rest of the team through some open source projects. Got intrigued and joined early. Brought along former colleagues Karel and Michal. Used to focus on server-side of things; now having fun with UI development as well. (GWT is Java, after all).Pilsen, Czech RepublicCurrent Temp:70 F°
Michal Růžička Developer & devops guy
Joined the team as a developer just after Karel and Filip. Handier with machinery than the others, so I also manage all our builds and infrastructure. Spend a lot of time helping enterprise customers with provisioning problems. Spend half my time developing, half my time doing devops and third half on customer projects.Pilsen, Czech RepublicCurrent Temp:70 F°
Kenn Hussey VP Development
Modeling guy & toolsmith by background. Worked at Embarcadero and IBM/Rational before Cloudsmith. Spend half my time planning the product and managing the development cycle and other half coding. Originally from Nova Scotia, where we like to have kids early and sail. (I did/do.)Ottawa, CanadaCurrent Temp:64 F°
John Malcolmson Creative Director
Help focus the message, make everything look good. Try to add a dash of “flavor” as well. Originally from New Zealand; went to RISD and stayed here. Worked in large branding/design firms. Ran my own shop with a partner (Cloudsmith was a client.) Left after we merged with a bigger firm. Now divide my time into slices for 3-4 startups needing internal creative direction.New York, United StatesCurrent Temp:65 F°
- cloudsmith/geppetto Formats readme hlindberg2013-02-18T15:06:55-08:00
- cloudsmith/geppetto Updates README with new DL link hlindberg2013-02-18T15:02:23-08:00
- cloudsmith/geppetto Adds puppet runtime definitions as resources on classpath. thallgren2013-02-11T00:49:27-08:00
- cloudsmith/geppetto Moves all tests to junit4 thallgren2013-02-09T03:32:52-08:00
- cloudsmith/geppetto Orders all artifacts included in the site feature alphabetically. thallgren2013-02-09T03:28:12-08:00
- cloudsmith/geppetto Moves selection of ruby parser to the points where use cases are setup. hlindberg2013-01-31T16:50:11-08:00
Puppet Camp/Dublin06 Jul 2012 - , Dublin, Ireland
DevOps Day/Silicon Valley28 Jun 2012 - , Mountain View, CA
PuppetCamp/DC15 Jun 2012 - , Washingon, DC
Jenkins/NYC17 May 2012 - , NY, NY