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The one sentence description.

We need a short and snappy description of what Maven is:

Apache Maven is a software project management and comprehension tool.

Is just not an easy to understand description of what Maven is.  


Some pointers:

  • The ideal suggestion will enable people to know, in just one sentence, if Maven might be what they are looking for or if it is not what they are looking for.
  • This will only be the first sentence of a brief paragraph that explains more about what Maven is, however, it is important to respect the reader's time... the first sentence may be the only sentence shown in search engine results, and it could be the only sentence that a visitor to our site actually reads. The goal of the sentence is thus that the reader should be armed with enough information to decide between committing more time to finding out about Maven or continuing searching for whatever it is they were looking for when they landed on our front page.


Here are the suggestions so far:

Apache Maven is a convention-over-configuration build tool which has great dependency management features.Roy Lyons

The three/four sentence description

This should start with the one sentence description and further help the reader decide if Maven could be what they were looking for.

Currently we have

Apache Maven is a software project management and comprehension tool. Based on the concept of a project object model (POM), Maven can manage a project's build, reporting and documentation from a central piece of information.

Which at least starts with the current one sentence description, but is not really helping people decide if Maven is for them.

  • A good description should hint at where we differ from other build tools, but it doesn't have to directly compare with any specific build tools.

    For example, Maven's philosophy is against procedural task driven descriptions of how to build the software. There are other build tools that take a task driven description of a build, e.g. Ant, Make, Rake, etc, or that have support for such descriptions, e.g. Gradle. A good description will expose our philosophy without knocking or directly comparing with other solutions in this space's philosophy choices.

    It is not our job to educate the reader about other build tools. Our job is to educate the reader about Maven.

    Let Ant, Gradle, Rake, Make, Buildr, etc educate their readers about their philosophies. We will educate our readers about ours. Let the reader choose the tool that best matches their own philosophies and needs

    Note: this does not preclude us from including a “feature comparison matrix” page somewhere in our site... but we should recognise that such a matrix would likely be biased by our philosophy, which most likely negates the utility of hosting such a page on our site. Let us leave the feature comparison matrices to those that have no axe to grind (and spend our energy ensuring that their matrices are fair to us, just as other solutions in this space should be doing for the representation of their tools on such matrices)