Sending the open source library I created off to college
The future of the library no longer requires my continual presence.
All grown up
I’ve spent 18 years growing a Java collections library named Eclipse Collections. I love this library. It is a great library, and has an amazing community of developers contributing to and supporting it. I will use this library for as long as I code in Java. This library has helped me achieve many things that the Java Collections framework could not.
I have been a doting parent for this library for over 18 years. It is time for this library to find its way.
The library enables developers to write better, more expressive and high performance code. Eclipse Collections helps produce better developers that care about their craft as software engineers. Productivity, readability, performance, efficiency… you name it, Eclipse Collections has it, and the library can help developers learn how to achieve these things in their daily Java application coding activities.
I could keep driving the library, but I don’t think it needs me to do this anymore. It is ready to go out and help the world as an adult library. It doesn’t require me to continue being a doting parent. I would just be holding it back. I created the library in 2004, and have helped maintain it for over a decade in open source. My son is a year younger than this library and we are preparing him for his senior year of high school and to go off to college and to grow up on his own. Eclipse Collections is a year older, and it is time for it to find its own way.
I wrote it all down
If you’ve been following my blogs here, I have been telling stories of the past 18, 20, 30, 40 years of my life as a developer. Almost everything you might want to know about the library has probably been told in a blog. I have left maps of all the places the library has been and some of places it might still go. I have explained how it evolved over time to solve challenging problems.
The library needs to meet new developers and find new friends who want to learn and contribute to it. There are many lessons this library has to offer the entire Java community. The open source Java developer community will be the future of Eclipse Collections.
Last year I wrote a blog series titled “The missing Java data structures no one ever told you about.” It has a lot of lesser known knowledge of how and why things were done in the framework.
Blog Series: The missing Java data structures no one ever told you about
The three part Eclipse Collections series all in one convenient place.
I’ve been contemplating when and how to take a break from Eclipse Collections for a long time, and now is the time. I was waiting for the Eclipse Collections 11.1 release to make this decision. I want to focus more time with my family and on my health. Reaching 2K followers on GitHub felt like a good milestone to take a much needed break.
Eclipse Collections 11.1 Released
We passed 2,000 stars on GitHub! Thank you to all of our supporters!
What does it mean for the future of the library?
Don’t worry, I’ll still be staying on as a committer for the library, and I will continue writing and sharing stories and lessons in blogs on occasion when I have time. I will also make code contributions if I find something that interests me. We have a great team of committers on the project. Based on the outcomes and some discussions that happened during the Eclipse Collections 11.1 release among the committer community, I think the future is fairly well defined for the library already. The part that is very clear — the library will baseline development on Java 11 in the next release.
What will I not be doing? I will not be actively driving the planning for the 12.0 or future releases. I will not be writing the release blogs after releases are completed. I will not be doing as many code reviews and merges, but I will do them for other committers on the project as needed. We are looking to promote more committers on the project, so this is a great time for contributors in the community who are interested in stepping up their game to get involved and hopefully go through the nomination and election process to committer once they have earned their way.
The future is not set and holds many possibilities. I hope this blog inspires and motivates others to get involved in shaping our collective future in the Java community.
The future is up to you, the contributor
The next 5 years for Eclipse Collections
My top 25 wish list for the future of Eclipse Collections development
Good luck and good health on your own journeys! Thank you!