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Mahout, mail # dev - Mahout as TLP


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Mahout as TLP
Grant Ingersoll 2010-02-12, 22:44
As many of you know, Mahout has been growing pretty quickly and has also reached a critical mass.  I, along with some others in the Mahout community, feel it would make sense for Mahout to become a TLP  With this in mind, I've submitted a proposal to the Lucene PMC to ask the board to make Mahout an Apache TLP.  One of the feedbacks from the PMC was question as to whether this has been discussed in the community and whether the community is for it.  I know it's been brought up tangentially in the past (see [1], [2], [3]) and there wasn't any disagreement, but it seems it warrants a more formal discussion.

I see the following pros:
1.  We'd like to organize several subprojects we wish to introduce (Core, NLP, Recommenders/Taste, Ports - C++, etc.) that wouldn't really fit as Lucene subprojects.  
2.  I also think longer term that while Machine Learning and Search are often related, they are not required of each other and that Mahout would be better aligned with a more narrow focus of Machine Learning only.
3. The PMC can be more narrowly focused on Mahout and it's needs and will be better informed of Mahout's contributors, etc.

Cons:
1. Lucene has a very strong brand and I have no doubt that Mahout benefits from that association
2. Changing mailing lists, etc. is a bit of a hassle (mostly for infrastructure), but not that big of a deal.  Still, Lucene is well established and well-run, so sometimes inertia is a good thing.

At the end of the day, I'm +1.
[1] http://search.lucidimagination.com/search/document/a6e03af2952ff196/possible_contribution_at_somewhat_of_a_tangent_to_mahout#5a41be454d503779

[2] http://search.lucidimagination.com/search/document/40c4c4ec11ca07b5/mi_clustering#7197ef846b384e4e

[3] http://search.lucidimagination.com/search/document/1817a5e65c83bae3/proposing_a_c_port_for_apache_mahout#8e4e8eabc945264d