Re: [ecasound] goodbye to dynamic libraries...?

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Subject: Re: [ecasound] goodbye to dynamic libraries...?
From: Tony Leake (
Date: Tue Oct 08 2002 - 09:28:39 EEST

I'm not sure I understand this. Would libecasoundc and the new standalone
libecasoundc both go?


>From: Kai Vehmanen <>
>Subject: [ecasound] goodbye to dynamic libraries...?
>Date: Tue, 8 Oct 2002 01:55:19 +0300 (EEST)
>First of all, if you think this is a very bad way to go, do let me know.
>This request is aimed especially to those of you who are involved with
>distribution issues. I'll consider silence as 'I agree'. :) Ok, let me
>1. Problem
>The current ecasound development model does not work very well. Nowadays
>it's simply impossible for me to spend long periods of time on ecasound
>development. I still have time for it, but it's just much more irregular.
>The common scenario nowadays is that I spent a hectic day or two
>implementing some new feature, and then have to return to other tasks.
>After a month or so the cycle repeats.
>2. Symptoms
>With the current model, the development series just never gets enough
>testing. As it is now, most ecasound users are using the stable branch.
>Only very few people actively use the development versions. This means I'm
>getting very little feedback concerning the new features, especially when
>compared to the huge amount of functionality that ecasound nowadays
>A prime example of this is that yesterday, when doing some multitrack
>recording with the latest 2.1dev12, I noticed a huge bug in the
>multitrack-mode code. It turned out that ecasound would stop processing if
>all inputs tracks became finished, _even though_ we were still recording a
>live input. The fact that a bug of this magnitude has gone unnoticed for
>many _months_ makes me very, very, very uncomfortable about the status of
>the current development branch.
>3. Lost in the woods
>During the last year or so I've tried to find a cure to this problem. I've
>spent lots and lots of time with library versioning issues, defining roles
>for different branches, change control, developer documentation and other
>stuff that doesn't directly benefit the normal end-users of ecasound
>(including myself).
>I've also tried to attack the problem with testing. I've written separate
>test tools for libecasound and libecasoundc, a general testsuite and
>various smaller tools. These have helped a lot, but in the end, testing
>just doesn't replace real-life use.
>At the same time, the reality is that aside ECI apps, _nobody_ is using
>ecasound as a platform. So most of this work is just wasted effort. And
>this isn't a problem of slow adoption. Although released versions of
>libecasound have been available for over two years, the only applications
>using it are ecawave and ecamegapedal (both written by me). Maintaining
>the whole shared-library thing going on for just these two,
>not-so-widely-used apps just doesn't seem sensible.
>4. Improvement Proposal
>Inspired by the recent work on standalone ECI implementations, I'd like to
>drop the whole ecasound-as-a-platform concept, and instead, continue
>developing ecasound as an application. Only supported way of using
>ecasound as a development platform would be ECI.
>5. Implications
>- only one code-branch (no more separate stable and development
> releases; just releases and CVS-access for bleeding-edge development)
>- removal of all shared libraries (libkvutils and libecasound)
>- ecasound binary would be statically linked against libkvutils
> and libecasound, but dynamically against other libraries
>- ecatools have to be rewritten using ECI (otherwise
> we'd have too many multi-megabyte binaries :))
>- ecawave and ecamegapedal have to be linked statically (this
> isn't that big of a problem, I'm quite sure the few people
> on this planet that use all these three apps can
> sacrifice the harddrive space for three copies of libecasound
> and libkvutils
>Huh, I tried to keep this short, but as always, I got carried
>away a bit. :)
> Audio software for Linux!
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