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I'm having a similar situation to yours, being delighted by Lua as a
language but facing a psychological barrier for using it in "real" projects.
What I've asked the Lua people to do is at least to get the book out and
into the Amazon. :) That gives some more 'prestige' or 'maturity' to the
language, at least in the eyes of the non-devotees.

My primary wish from a commercial support house would be to have a clean,
nice, preferably Win32/Linux/OS-X multiplatform IDE. Currently, all of the
IDEs I've seen are smallish and sort-of functioning. None of them have been

Keeping thumbs up for your suggestion, and following it...

- Asko Kauppi
  Flextronics Finland

Flextronics Design Finland
Box 23, 39201 Kyröskoski, Finland
+358 205 345 251 phone
+358 205 345 332 fax

> -----Original Message-----
> From:	Ray Garcia []
> Sent:	Wednesday, November 13, 2002 6:05 AM
> To:	Multiple recipients of list
> Subject:	Ideas for implementing commercial support for Lua
> > From: Luiz Henrique de Figueiredo []
> > Sent: Tuesday, November 12, 2002 6:44 AM
> > To:
> > Subject: Re: survey
> >
> > What do you mean by "commercial support"? Other people have said
> something
> > similar and we're trying to understand how this could be implemented.
> >
> > Thanks again.
> > --lhf
> Suggestions from Ray Garcia:
> On the topic of commercial support: probably the best model to look at is
> Linux, either Redhat, Suse, Mandrake or Turbo Linux.  These vendors sell
> packaging and support for Linux while remaining totally open source.
> Similiar example with support for MySQL or Postgres.  In the Java
> community
> probably is an other model to look at.
> One can either simply download open source software and struggle with
> getting it running or they can pay a small fee and get a fully tested and
> installable package.  If one needs to do something other than the basic
> installation then they could buy into a support program that lets them get
> questions answered in a timely manner.  In the cases where someone needs
> to
> do something novel they have a source of developers they could potential
> contract to customize the open source implementation.  I beleive that this
> somewhat describes the maturing of the open source movement and gives a
> balance between open flexibility and sustaining the cost of on-going
> development.  When open source is left only to volunteer efforts of a few
> people it presents a risk to any business who has the desire to adopt the
> open source solution but does not want to find itself without support when
> defects are found or new releases as technology advances.  Of course with
> patience it is possible to solve many issues when adopting open source by
> asking for help from volunteers, unfortunately most business can't afford
> to
> depend on this and need something more definate.
> This is somewhat dealing with market perception more than reality in the
> case of Lua.  For example; if one was to perceive that Lua development and
> future releases had a commercial incentive then it would be more likely
> that
> the language would be supported in the future.  The perception now (I my
> opinion) is that Lua is a powerful scripting language with academic appeal
> and of interest to the technically gifted and curious.  I recognize that
> the
> reality is that Lua is actively supported and that if one needed help I'm
> sure one would be able to find a volunteer to answer questions.
> While the approach the Lua community is taking today leaves opportunity
> for
> a wide variety of uses for Lua it limits the adoption to those who wish to
> make Lua part of an existing effort.  Lua has the benefit of being small,
> simple and fast but lacks the builtin libraries that might make it
> generally
> usefull to a broad range of uses.  Each person needs to start with a small
> Lua core and integrate it with whatever they deem necessary.  This is
> somewhat a philosophical position that I think the Lua community has taken
> intentionally.  In contrast Python can be small as well but it has a large
> set of standard libraries that one could use immediately.  If one needs a
> small version of Python its easy enough to strip away what is not needed.
> Therefore it all depends on where the Lua community assumes the use for
> Lua
> will be.  Today the assumption seems to be that it is not general purpose
> and omits the large standard library approach.  My suggestion is that Lua
> should come with an optional large standard library.
> I beleive that Lua may be very close to being a viable option for not just
> Python but other emerging languages as well.  For example; I looked at
>, which is based on Lua and is probably the most powerful script
> technology for the internet around, I was able to execute the complex
> demos
> in just a few minutes.  Each of these demos are just a few lines of code.
> In contrast if one was to attempt the exact same demos using ActiveX, a
> Java
> applet, or Flash the download time alone would be so long as to not make
> it
> practical.  Looking at you'll see another example of a failed
> strategy, to run the demo's requires a 12meg download and installation
> process.  IBM research has put out Sash Weblications which again requires
> lots of downloads and setup and runs slowly.  A good example of what Yindo
> and Lua could easily compete with is  Rebol approach to the
> internet is very lean and powerful with a language that is simple,
> flexible,
> and lightweight.
> Aside from the support question I raise above I beleive that if the Lua
> community took on the effort of adopting a standard library that included
> all of something like what Yindo attempted it would position the Lua
> effort
> as a direct alternative to Python, Ruby and other scripting languages.
> You may be asking, "well if he thinks that Yindo is the way to go then why
> not just use it and leave Lua the way it is", this basically goes back to
> the support and commercial issues.  The Yindo effort was three guys, all
> of
> whom seem to have moved on to other projects and do not  maintaining Yindo
> anymore.  One of the Yindo founders has even started to create yet another
> scripting language.  Same for several of the Lua projects I have asked
> about
> over the internet.  Nearly all of them were great ideas started by a
> single
> person who only periodically supported the Lua project they started or
> have
> completely stopped the effort.
> I want to consider using Lua for a commercial project but for now I'll
> only
> look at it as another very cool scripting language to program in for fun.
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