WAnt Overview

WAnt is a Pascal-friendly build automation tool. It automates the process of building, testing, and packaging applications and libraries much like Apache (ex Jakarta) Ant does. WAnt is kind of like Ant, without being Java-dependent, whereas Ant was "kind of like Make, but without Make's wrinkles."

Build automation is the act of scripting or automating the process of compiling computer source code into binary code. This automated build is in contrast to a manual build process where a person has to perform multiple, often tedious and error prone tasks. It involves automating a wide variety of tasks that a software developer will do in their day-to-day activities including things like packaging binary code, running tests and deployment to production systems. The goal of this automation is to create a one-step process for turning source code into a working system. This is done to save time and to reduce errors. [http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Build_Automation]

WAnt is written in Borland CodeGear Delphi, primarily — but not exclusively — for users of Delphi and other Pascals. It was originally written by Juancarlo AƱez in 2001. Juanca eventually ceded control of the project to Andrew J. Wozniewicz in 2005.

WAnt is FREE software. It is released under the Mozilla Public License 1.1 and its distribution includes the complete Delphi 7/Object Pascal source code.

Since the early 2007, WAnt is undergoing a serious overhaul (well, a complete re-write, actually) which will eventually result in the release of WAnt 2.0 — still a Pascal-friendly build tool, but also a general-purpose script engine running WAntScript, and less of an Ant-like derivative.

Currently, WANT 2.0 is in ALPHA (development) stage. The current alpha release can be downloaded from SourceForge. The current release features a new GUI IDE (see the screenshot below) called WIDE, in addition to the traditional command-line version of WANT.

Both WIDE and WANT can run scripts written in WANTScript, a new, general-purpose, block-structured scripting language based on Modula-7 and designed to be programmer-friendly (i.e. readable, in the tradition of Pascal-like languages).

Use http://news.optimax.com/dnewsweb.exe?cmd=xover&group=sdforum.want for issue tracking, suggestions, and general discussion of WAnt and related tools.