Spring Cleaning for Smoother WordCram Builds

I’ve been frustrated with WordCram’s automated build for a long time. It was a giant tangle of ant, JUnit, SVN, javadoc, and googlecode file-uploads, and it was always a struggle to change it, or even remember what it did for me.

Moving to github aggravated this, because it meant the automated build had to change. Release downloads go to a different place. I’d like to use Git’s more flexible branching. And where should I host the javadocs?

So this weekend, I re-wrote the build in rake, which has already paid off: WordCram’s downloads & javadoc are now officially hosted on github, and I’ve started using a more effective branching strategy (based on git flow). And new ideas, like generating simpler HTML documentation, or automatically tweeting or blog-posting releases, will be easy to implement.

But the biggest benefit is that it’ll make WordCram so much easier to work on. Small bug fixes can be quickly released, and I can make progress on bigger features and improvements on a separate branch, easily merging between them. I’m looking forward to getting back into it!

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