Irrational Maven Hatred Sighting


I’m declaring war on irrational Maven hatred. If you have real and valid criticism and feedback for Maven, I’m all for people taking out as much frustration as they want. What I’m done with is the whole “I hate Maven, I can do it better myself” lobby. Here’s an example….. always look at the URL of a post, it can be instructive, this one is “why_i_hate_mave.html” which I can only guess is short for the original title “Why I Hate Maven”, here it is (click on it to read it):

In it, she throws around some passive-aggressive self-congratulation on “finishing the build/release product”: “We have a new configuration manager here, somebody who used to work here, and has now come back. Luckily, I finished the build/release product before he got here, and he seems to like it – at least he isn’t complaining to me.” Now, isn’t that fun? Here’s someone openly blogging about office politics – how would you like to be the “configuration manager” reading this co-worker’s blog.

Maven is clearly not sufficient to produce “segments”: “Our build/release system is very complicated, as it has to build something that the government calls ‘segments’.” She then fails to provide any details.

The author then proceeds to fantasize about getting the opportunity to write an issue management system from scratch “either in Java, php, or Ruby on Rails”.

What’s so fun about this post is that it illustrates three problems with the anti-Maven lobby:

  1. They fail to provide details of any kind. Why not Maven? Well why not just write the thing in Maven? The problem with the anti-Maven crowd is that when they start providing reasons to not use Maven, people start saying difficult things like, “well sure, you do know that Maven can handle that, don’t you?”
  2. They are often political – professional IT turf-defenders. I saw the UK-based build tools team at (massive international bank) reject Maven on purely political grounds. It wasn’t that Maven couldn’t handle the workload, it was that the people “in-charge” of the tools group didn’t want to yield any ground. Often, the rejection of Maven has more to do with developers defending turf or developers feeling challenged. This is especially true of organizations which have full-time employees devoted to build process and developer tools – often these are the people with the incentive to keep the build obscure.
  3. They are convinced of their own genius – they will write everything from scratch. Someone who fails to see the utility of a tool like Maven will often fail to see the utility of other tools. In this particular post we see someone so oblivious to progress that they are really thinking of implementing an issue tracker (do we not have a sufficient number of issue trackers available? Trac, Jira, Bugzilla, BugZero, and about a hundred other options.) What’s most troubling about this particular post is that the she works for some government office somewhere. Hopefully she isn’t busily perfecting another issue tracker.

Not using Maven has more to do with ignorance, territory, and laziness than anything else.