Daily Archives: October 30, 2011

Frontier Lives (again!)

So I have a long history with UserLand Frontier, a scripting and database environment that runs on the Mac and Windows.  I spent some time in 2004 as a product manager for UserLand, trying to shepherd the Radio UserLand blogging tool in the fledgling community.  I wrote my fair share of UserTalk scripts for UserLand and myself and shipped some nice code–at least for my skill level.  I worked with some great people with big ideas and even met some big people with great ideas.

One of those people was Adam Curry, long time Radio UserLand blogger, podcaster and former MTV V-jay.  Adam still uses the software and it’s cousins (OPML Editor by Dave Winer) to produce a website and RSS feed for his regular podcasts.  That’s an oversimplification, but for the few readers of the weblog, it will have to do.

Adam’s looking for some help with Frontier–the core of what has become many similar products–to make it run on a new platform and a new environment.  He’d like it to run under Linux for a few simple reasons, mainly to prevent vendor lock-in and give him control of his future PC environments.  I get that.  He’s reached out to the community that’s left looking for someone to take on the Herculean task of creating another “cousin”–Frontier on Linux.

While I know the source code structure and have a basic understanding of how it works, I’m not fluent in the kernel programming environment.  But, since I’m an architect for technology and some of that knowledge will carry over, I’ve decided to approach this problem from that direction.  I’ll jump in the pool again with both feet, trying to architect a direction forward.

Sometimes it’s easier for people to point out a mistake in someone else’s plan than to come up with one on their own.  Maybe my plan will get some people thinking and sharing and finding a way forward.

PS–I’m doing this for fun.  Let’s all have fun together! 🙂