REBOL Technologies

About Priorities...

Carl Sassenrath, CTO
REBOL Technologies
7-Aug-2006 22:19 GMT

Article #0284
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From recent feedback questions, I'm concerned that our current development priorities may not be well understood. To help clarify our focus, a summary was posted (obsolete now).

I know that some of you think that we "jump around" between projects. I think it is important to understand that RT splits its resources between research and development (R&D). Sometimes we focus on R. Other times we focus on D.

For example, projects like Rebcode (REBOL VM) were more research oriented. It was an interesting project, and we think users also learned a few things about the possibilities. It is likely that rebcode will be added to a future release of REBOL, but we're only going to do that if we hear that developers really want that capability.

Another example was the REBOL web browser plugin. Back in 2004, we thought running REBOL within the browser was an interesting research project, so we built a prototype. However, upon release, we received so little interest and feedback from developers, that we decided not to pursue the concept further. Then, at the 2005 developer's conference, we discovered to our surprise that developers did want the browser plugin, and that's why we resumed with the project this year and hope to have a final release for you soon. Also, the browser plugin will be a primary feature supported by REBOL 3.0.

I should also mention that there are other market forces that have a strong influence on our development path. I have a model in my mind for what I want REBOL to become and where I want to see REBOL gain adoption and market share. I spend a lot of time studying and considering the long term trends of the Internet, where it is headed, and how REBOL can play a part in that future. Such things will definitely have an effect on development. REBOL 3.0 is a prime example.

Finally, there is one more thing to consider. REBOL 3.0 is designed to allow plugin modules. This means that certain REBOL features may be made "external", and that means your priorities and our priorities can be different because you'll have a good way to extend REBOL. If you need a feature, you can add it. For instance, if you want VOIP, then add that module to REBOL. It is our hope that in this fashion developers will contribute a wide range of useful enhancements.

Well, that's it in a nutshell. If you have a question, please ask (via public comments or private message if you prefer).

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