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Tim Kelly wrote:
Stephen wrote:
The leader in the Lua scenario is effectively the Queen bee, setting the
direction etc, but absolutely replacable in the event of the Queen bee's

Ok.  By whom?

I thought that would be self evident by now. By the community. Same as in the hive I just described. You want the benefits of commercial support without apparently wanting to pay for it. In the absence of that, you have to accept that the community does what the community does. I would be amazed if in the event of the demise of the current leadership that some other leadership did not happen. Who that will be can only be found out in the fullness of time.

Should I be wrong about your unwillingness to pay for it, there are plenty of people here that will be willing, for a fee, to provide you with support. Just ask (I will not be one of them).

If you don't like that you can go the commercial route and witness the fate (as others have already mentioned) of Visual Basic users: They have a choice of: A) Migrate to Visual Basic.Net with all the costs associated with learning .Net (non trivial to your average VB user and a fair bit of work for an experienced VB software engineer). Its a major discontinuity. B) Use a third party product (name escapes me, seen it in a Dr Dobbs add) which is supposedly VB compatible
C) Continue without support and no access to the VB source code.

With Lua your options are:
A) Migrate to an arbitrary other language with all the costs associated with it. Non trivial.
B) Continue with the Lua community.
C) Continue without support and but with access to the Lua source code - Take the Lua source in house and maintain it yourself (thus solving the support issue). Take a look at the source, its the smallest of all the scripting languages out there, by quite a margin.

Seems like Lua offers an equivalent (A) or better (B, C) options.

C is blatantly obvious, but you appear to discount that option as expensive. But why is archiving something to CD Rom expensive? If it isn't broken you have nothing to fix and thus nothing to maintain. You don't take your car's engine apart for a full rebuild for the sake of it, you do that if a piston breaks (highly unlikely). But that is the cost you appear to be placing on it.

Frankly, having read your other replies (recurring revenue stream by forcing unwanted and unnecessary change on your customers *) I have little doubt you will find anything here that suits your needs. People using Lua want to get things done, done right, done once. No need to repeat yourself for the wrong reason. Looking at the most development communities from C++ to Python to Ruby, I find the same thing.

Re: Your business wants change answers. Could not disagree more. The only reason people flit from technology to technology is either because they haven't found what they need or they are "headless chicken" mode and have little clue what they really need, or you are dealing with bankers, who for some strange reason always want to be on the bleeding edge of technology. My experience of a wide variety of companies is that they choose their technologies carefully and stick to the choice, only adding (adding, not replacing) new technologies when the technology is appropriate for serving a new class of customer and adds to the business.

You've been given plenty of useful answers. Sadly you seem to only want to hear "roadmap this, roadmap that". You've already been told that Adobe, the dominant vendor of graphical software tools uses Lua. If they are sold on it (despite having two in house languages (Flex and AIR)) what is the problem?

The problem appears to be that you want a roadmap. And people to stand behind it, like in multi-million dollar organisations such as Microsoft and Intel.

I cna't help thinking this desire for roadmaps is to avoid any responsibility for a decision. A roadmap provides the ability to pass the buck should something go wrong. "Oh but we used this roadmap, it said such and such. I take no blame for any errors in my decisions". Thats about as helpful as all these banks that sold sub-prime mortgages as "collateralised debt obligations" creating fake money that only comes back to bite them in the backside with $10 billion write offs (and a lot of damage to the economy on both sides of the Atlantic).

We didn't need a roadmap when making the decisions to port our software to support Lua, Python, Ruby, or JavaScript. What we did need was some application of the grey matter inside our heads and the responsiblity accept that there is some element of risk in all decisions in life. If there had been a roadmap we may have examined it to check that it was going roughtly where we expected it to go, but that is more to spot new opportunities than to absolve ourself of any errors in planning.

(*) Our customers get changes that improve the software, not un-necessary ones to generate revenue.