I am happy to announce that OASIS v0.4.0 has just been released.

Logo OASIS small

OASIS is a tool to help OCaml developers to integrate configure, build and install systems in their projects. It should help to create standard entry points in the source code build system, allowing external tools to analyse projects easily.

This tool is freely inspired by Cabal which is the same kind of tool for Haskell.

You can find the new release here and the changelog here. More information about OASIS in general on the OASIS website.

I have recently resumed my work on OASIS and this will be hopefully the new version that will lead to quicker iteration in the development of OASIS. The development process was slowdown by the fact, that I feared introducing new fields in _oasis or regression. This was a pain and I decided to change my development model.

Features

The most important step is the introduction of AlphaFeatures and BetaFeatures fields. They allow to introduce pieces of code that will only be activated if certain features are listed in those fields. It should help to be always ready to release.

The features also cover other aspect like flag_tests and flag_docs which has been introduced in OASIS v0.3.0. In fact the features API is now used to introduce all enhancement while keeping backward compatibility with regard to OASISFormat. Rather than defining a ~since_version:0.3 for fields we use a feature that handle the maturity level of the feature. When I feel a specific feature is ready to ship, I just change the InDev Alpha to InDev Beta and then SinceVersion 0.4. On the long term, when we won't support anymore a version of OASIS that existed before the SinceVersion, the feature will always be true and I will fully integrate it in the code.

The only constraint around features is: if you use AlphaFeatures or BetaFeatures field, you must use the latest OASISFormat...

Features section in the manual.

Example of features available:

  • section_object: allow to create object (.cmo/.cmx) in _oasis
  • pure_interface: an OCamlbuild feature that allows to handle .mli without a .ml file

Automate

Another topic is automation of testing releases. For OASIS v0.3.0, I ran tests on all platforms manually, late in the development of v0.3.0 and it was painful to fix. So I have decided to setup a Jenkins instance that automate testing on Linux. On the long term, I plan to also setup a Mac OS X builder and start looking at Windows as well. This should help me catch errors early and be able to fix them quickly.

However, for v0.4.0 I have decided to just release what I have and which has mainly be tested on Linux. The point here is to quickly release and iterate, rather than wait for perfection. Hopefully end user testing will allow to quickly discover new bugs.

Time boxed release

In the coming months, I will try to do time boxed releases. I will try to release version of OASIS every 15th of the month. The point here is to try to iterate faster and avoid long delay between release.

See you in 1 month for the next release.