Monday, August 25, 2014

Axis2 is 10 years

All most 10 years ago (August 21, 2004) we started Axis2 project and during last 10 years it has become one of the most successful projects in Apache software foundation (and yes this marked my 10 years at Apache).  Axis2 was started with a handful or people including Sanjiva, Dims, Glen, Paul, Srinath, Chinthaka, Ajith, Chathura, Jaliya and myself (and second wave consist of many more).  

In a short period of time a small team of six developers was able to make a huge process and it was more than enough to convinced IBM to drop their own web service stack (which they were working for many months) and join Axis2. That was the first wave of developers outside Sri lanka joined Axis2. Today, IBM websphere comes with Axis2 as the default WS framework.

Here are the few noticeable tings about Axis2.

  • Axis2 was the main driving force behind bringing Microsoft to ASF (through Stonehenge).
  •  All the initial members (Chinthaka, Ajith, Chathura, Srinath, Jaliya and myself) of the project were able to obtain PhDs (Axis2 is the first project in the history of Apache to do something in this nature).
  • Helped many Sri Lankan students to pursue their higher studies in top universities in the world (over 50 students, in several countries).
  •  Helped Sri Lanka to become the open source hub in the Asian continent.  Sri Lanka is the only country outside USA and Europe to have most number of Apache committers and members.
  • Community around Axis2 helped to have first ever Apache Con (ApacheCon Asia 2006) outside USA and Europe.
  • Google summer of code effort in Sri Lanka was started with Axis2 (now for several consecutive years Sri Lanka has produced a number of successful Google summer of code projects.
  • Produced many international speakers and authors.
  • The main web service framework used for many academic research studies across the globe.
  •  Axis2 is used for eBay to process two billion transactions per day.

 Let's look back some of the history of Axis2 project.

This is the First email that Srinath sent to the list announcing Axis2 F2F

These are the first set of people who come to the Axis2 F2F.

This is the summary mail of the first F2F

At the initial stage of Axis2 we used to have weekly chat, what special about those chat is we(initial developers) implement a prototype and discuss about that at the weekly chat. The funny thing is all most all the days, we have to throw that prototype and start a new one after the chat.
Here is the chat log of the first weekly chat.

From the day one of the project we used to follow the Apache guidelines, so we create patch and send them to the list. Then existing commiters can apply them, most of the time Alex and Dims used to apply those patches.

Here is the very first patch of the project.

When we start the project we did not have any commiter for Axis2 project, we had WS commiters. So following are the initial commiters of Axis2 project and here is the commiiter nomination email.

[VOTE][Axis2]Ajith, Deepal and Chinthaka for Axis2 Commiter

At the initial stage of the project we had so many milestone release before we hit 0.94 release. Here is the announcement email for first release of Axis2.
Axis2 first release – Axis2 M1
First few F2F
  • First F2F 21-24 August 2004, Colombo, Sri Lanka. And here is the first set of people who came to the event
  • Second F2F March 29-31st 2005 – Comobo, Sri Lanka
  • Third F2F and hackathon – December, 2005, San Diago, USA
  • Fourth F2F and hackathon - Indiana University, Bloomington