Analysis and Modeling of the Governance in General Programming Languages
General Programming Languages (GPLs) continuously evolve to adapt to the ever changing technology landscape. The evolution is rooted on technical aspects but it is ultimately decided by the group of people governing the language and working together to solve, vote and approve the new language extensions and modifications. As in any community, governance rules are used to manage the community, help to prioritize their tasks and come to a decision. Typically, these rules specify the decision-making mechanism used in the project, thus contributing to its long-term sustainability by clarifying how core language developers (external contributors and even end-users of the language) can work together. Despite their importance, this core topic has been largely ignored in the study of GPLs. In this paper we study eight well-known GPLs and analyze how they govern their evolution. We believe this study helps to clarify the different approaches GPLs use in this regard. These governance models, depicted as a feature model, can then be reused and mixed by developers of new languages to define their own governance.
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