Preface to the First Edition

In early 2000, Steve took a sabbatical from HP Laboratories, taking a break from research into such areas as adaptive, context-aware laptops to build web services, a concept that was very much in its infancy at the time.

He soon discovered that he had entered a world of chaos. Business plans, organizations, underlying technologies—all could be changed at a moment’s notice. One technology that remained consistent from that year was Ant. In the Spring of 2000, it was being whispered that a “makefile killer” was being quietly built under the auspices of the Apache project: a new way to build Java code. Ant was already in use outside the Apache Tomcat group, its users finding that what was being whispered was true: ...

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