[webkit-dev] Merging the iOS port to svn.webkit.org (Re: WebCore and interlocking threads)

Maciej Stachowiak mjs at apple.com
Fri Feb 8 14:05:21 PST 2013

On Feb 8, 2013, at 1:41 PM, Adam Barth <abarth at webkit.org> wrote:

> Context: https://bugs.webkit.org/show_bug.cgi?id=109071
> Adam Barth said:
>> It's not clear to me that running WebCore on multiple interlocked threads is a good idea.  That
>> seems like a pretty major change to WebCore's architecture.  Is that something that's up for
>> discussion?
> Darin Adler said:
>> I agree that it’s not something I’d do if I was starting a project now.
>> In the iOS context, it’s fantastic for discussion as a possibly multi-year major architecture
>> change, but if we take a hard line on this, then we won’t have the iOS port in the tree for
>> years, and I think it would be good if we do. iOS WebKit has worked this way for the entire
>> history of iPhone, so it’s not a change that can be made easily.
> Darin Adler also said:
>> I think where you and I may differ is on whether a good solution to the problem would be
>> valuable to the WebKit project. Is there some way I convince you of the value of fitting
>> an important existing port of WebKit into our tree in as clean as possible a way?
> I don't really know how to respond to this thread.  I feel like I'm
> being offered the following choice:
> 1) Give up the ability to have technical input to how WebCore works
> and simply accept all the design choices made in the iOS fork, whether
> they be good choices or bad.
> 2) Keep the iOS port in an Apple-internal fork for a number of years.
> I feel like I'm being asked to make this choice in the context of a
> growing trend of unilateral action by Apple in this project.  Given
> that trend, I don't see how I can choose option (1).
> As much as I would like the iOS port merged into trunk, I'm not
> willing to give up having a technical say in the project.  Therefore,
> reluctantly, I'm forced to choose option (2).

If we'd taken an equally hard line when Google wanted to merge the Chromium port to trunk, with a number of design choices in place that we didn't agree with but which were hard to change, it probably still wouldn't be in the tree to this day. I don't think that would have been a good thing for the WebKit project.

I am curious how others feel about the value of merging the iOS port back to trunk as soon as possible, vs. the need to fix all of the past design decisions in this port that may be disputed.


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