Plugins(modules)? H8 them or luv them?

Some thoughts and unanswered questions about pluggable(modular) architecture of todays software.


Ah, nice to be blogging again :]


Today however, I got a complain reason ... plugins or modules (how do U like to call 'em?) ...


Been updating Firefox lately and naturally to get it to the Opera like level I had to update dozen of plugins. One of them broke my browser in that kinda way, that the session manager plugin works odd now and I keep getting a stupid preferences alert window whenever I open a new firefox window (not tab).

Yeah, I am an engineer, so I am going to find what the prob is and fix it, but it's just a waste of my(our) time caused by lack of testing before release.


Why do I even care to write about it? Because living on the edge just brings such stuff, but still I think, most of the probs could be omited.
A similar thing happened to me with our Netbeans, when I installed a bunch of plugins(modules) and one of them broke my Tools/Options dialogue (it crashed down).


I mean, it's really nice to be able to put your own functionality to the product, but couldn't be the integration improved a little bit?


If I should compare Opera against Firefox or JBuilder against Netbeans(Eclipse) I'd say, that thing is the only difference(functionality is almost the same, user experience lacks the integration feeling). One can say it's the same reg. Windows and Solaris (Linux).
Hmm, maybe the "distros" idea isn't that bad. I really like NB5.5 enterprise preview or other our product built upon Netbeans. But than again it's a problem with confusion - all the names for the same thing ... hmm, guess that's the tax for high expectations from things (yeah, converging to a very political topic).


Wondering what can be done. Better testing before including to a public download/update site? Hire some integration and testing teams? Or just leave it on people - enthusiasts who create their own "distros" (leave the community to solve it)?


I'll definitely update this article after the talk with Roumen on this reg. to Netbeans ;)


Till then just have a good one ...


Update:

Well, living on the edge ... test by yourself, or just wait and get a stable software ... sigh


Btw. I had to reinstall Firefox and redownload all modules, before that I cleared all registers and leftovers. Sometimes to start over from scratch just clears the way for better things ;)

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Different stories on my ramblings under the Sun/Oracle

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