Wednesday, August 06, 2008

Jackson JSON-processor: winning over "customers", one by one

I was delighted to find out this little gem of a blog entry. Not just (or even so much) due to author having good things to say about Jackson JSON processor (standing out over multitude of ostensibly similar alternatives), but because I can relate to the challenge of evaluating multiple freely available alternatives.

I like it when I see other people taking their time actually figuring out best (or good enough) tools: not only should that be good for the individual and their immediate surroundings (team, company), but in the end I think it is also essential for the health of "Open Source ecosystem". Without selective customers there will not be much evolutionary forces, and the only significant system of feedback will be amplification for the most popular systems.

Also, although I do not have a good idea as to how many users (or, groups of users) of Jackson there are (most often I learn of new users via feature or bug reports -- based on this, I would estimate it to be in "at most a dozen" range), I know that for now adoption happens by winning potential users over, one by one. And I actually like it: early adopters use libraries either because they have no alternatives, or because they have found them best for their use. I prefer this over just getting new users because of existing users, inertia, and general ignorance of developer population. So if Jackson had a motto, it could well be adapted from Hertz' slogan: "We are just one of 17 choices, so we work harder!".

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