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Moving to Maven

27 April 2008

I’ve always liked the idea of Maven, and I’ve watched many projects make the transition to Maven over the years, but like a lot of other folks, I just never took the time to learn it, and therefore, never actually used it myself. Recently, I became involved in a project that was already using Maven, and so I finally had to take a closer look at it and figure out how to use it. I have to say, it didn’t take too long at all for me to decide that this was something that I wanted to be using for everything in which I was involved.

Of course, it isn’t just Maven itself, but the whole TDD concept and all of the plugins and reports … the whole package is just a huge pile of things that I’ve always wanted to get into, but never really took the time to learn. Those days are over, now, though … I’m jumping in with both feet.

It’s a bad time to move everything that I have been building recently over to Maven, though, for a couple of reasons. One is that, if I wanted these to be Maven projects, I should have started them out as Maven project in the beginning — that would have made things a lot easier. But then, on that count, I am reminded of an old Chinese proverb:

“The best time to plant a tree was 20 years ago. The second best time is right now.”

The other reason that this is not necessarily the best time to embark on such a project is that I am right in the middle of implementing OpenID authentication in the example application. I initially thought that I should really finish that up first, and release another sample .ear file with the OpenID authentication completed before I start on something completely new. “Finish one thing first before you start another” is something that I heard on more than one occasion during the early years of my life, and something that has pretty much stuck with me ever since. In fact, there really isn’t all that much left to do in order call that little project complete, but to be honest, I’d really like to release the next example as a Maven project, and to do that, I’m going to need to make the switch first.

Besides, it’s something new to play with, and I’m not answering to anyone but myself on these little ventures, and it’s something that I want to do. So, even though it may not be the best of times to make the move, I’m going to do it anyway. I’m making the move to Maven.


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