Hi Folks,

At RubyConf 2007, some discussion came up yet again about PDF::Writer
and how it's unfortunate that such an important library has been
inactive for so long.   I am pleased to announce that we are going to
pick up where Austin left off and get things rolling again.

== The Plan ==

Michael Milner and myself will be acting as maintainers for the time
being, but what this really means is that the doors are now re-opened
for community contributions.   We're going to start by moving some of
our bug fixing patches that are currently being distributed with
Ruport back into PDF::Writer, and then work on applying some of the
patches that have accumulated in the tracker over the last several
months.

We don't really know what our grand plan for the future is, but in the
short term, you can expect a 1.1.4 maintenance release by the year's
end, and some open ears for suggestions, patches, and problem reports.

It's a little early for an 'official' announcement, but we wanted the
members of this list to know that the effort to revitalize PDF::Writer
is underway, and invite you to keep an eye on progress as well as
participate in the coming months.

== Current Status ==

As of this morning, I've answered all open bug requests in the
tracker.
http://rubyforge.org/tracker/index.php?group_id=81&atid=395

If you own one of those, please take a look over it and see if I've
requested more information or check to see if the code has been fixed
and test it out.

Also, if you're using Ruport, you can try out the PDF::Writer 1.1.4
codebase with it by building Ruport from trunk.  This is a good way to
help us uncover bugs and issues, so please do this if you can.

Finally, please see the mailing list archives for various requests
I've made of users to help us hunt bugs.  Since this codebase is
essentially foreign to us except for the parts we've needed to work
with before, we'll need your help.

== Getting Involved ==

We'll be developing on our own host and migrating the RubyForge bugs
over to Trac, you can take a look at it here:

http://stonecode.svnrepository.com/ruby_pdf

If you want to start running off of the 1.1.x maintenance branch and
reporting problems to us, feel free to pull SVN:

http://stonecode.svnrepository.com/svn/ruby_pdf/pdf-writer/branches/branch-1.1.x/

There are already several bug fixes in there, including a memory usage
improvement to PDF::SimpleTable, so it's worth testing out.

It's advisable to stay away from PDF::Writer's trunk until we can
investigate what
the state of that code is, we'll announce when it's open again for
development.

== More News Soon ==

Anyway, that's about all for now... stay tuned for more announcements,
and feel free to use the ruby-pdf mailing list to let us know what
parts of
PDF::Writer need the most love. You can find it here:

http://rubyforge.org/mailman/listinfo/ruby-pdf-discuss

Thanks, and happy PDF hacking!

-greg