Dependency Management in Scala: Now and Later

Scala keeps Java's dependency management, with metadata fetched on demand from central repositories. This makes it difficult to mirror, publish releases, reliably cache, and efficiently build. The metadata is limited, with no compatibility data. The lack of this data led to the cross-versioning hack now used to publish for multiple Scala versions.
Typesafe's Mark Harrah, creator of the Scala build tool sbt, describes current limitations, suggests some improvements, and offers a few tips. He proposes a future system that addresses compatibility, builds on distributed version control of metadata, and has a mechanism for working with the existing standard.
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Published March 20, 2013