Tuesday, February 13, 2007

When Jupiter Aligns with Mars

For the past few days, I have been so filled with the joy of EclipseCon that I cannot contain it.

However, March seems like an inconvenient time to have the Eclipse event of the year --particularly for the Eclipse developers:
  1. EclipseCon preparation time takes away from development time when we could be fixing bugs and adding new features. Add onto that the week of EclipseCon itself where development practically comes to a halt.
  2. Teams try to cram as much new functionality as possible into M5 to showcase it at the conference. Quality of some of these features may be somewhat questionable, given that there was not enough time to test.
Wouldn't July, for example, be a better time to hold the conference? It would be right after the release of the Eclipse train; so it is a time when the developers are unwinding, and the quality/volume of new features is at its peak.

As for why EclipseCon is currently held in March every year, here is my conjecture:
"Given our apparent (and inexplicable ;-) fascination with Jupiter, March is probably the month when Jupiter aligns with Mars or something. So we must hold EclipseCon at that time. We must!"


Donald Smith said...

July and August are generally conference "dead zones" because of their popularity for summer vacations.

Chris Aniszczyk (zx) said...

September? I think there can be a better time for the conference than March also, just not sure when. It would be nice to have a stable (and new) release of the platform to work with. Instead at the conference, you get a mix of people that are working off the current stable (let's say 3.2.2) and bleeding edge (3.3M5).

John Arthorne said...

Perhaps you forget, EclipseCon isn't for the developers of the Eclipse platform, it's for the community. We make up only a tiny fraction of EclipseCon attendees. Speaking for myself, since it's -25 degrees in Ottawa this morning, a trip to California any time between December and March is most welcome.

Anonymous said...

There is actually a real reason.

Section 6.7 of the Eclipse Foundation Bylaws states that the "... annual meetings of the Membership At-Large shall be held in the first calendar quarter of each year, on such date and at such time and place as determined by resolution of the Board..."

Since we're obligated to have our full annual general membership meeting --- which BTW includes committer members --- in the first quarter, we've always held EclipseCon in the first quarter.

I suppose its debatable whether March is the best month in the quarter.

But that's the real reason :-)