After several very, very long debates with Geir over commons-logging, i have become largely convinced that it is something we should do with hesitation (i.e. let's talk about it for 2.0, but not before). i've also begun to have some frustrations with commons-logging in both work projects and in VelocityTools.
regardless of these issues, it is clear to me that Velocity's LogSystem and use of it is in great need of improvement. we need to lower the priority of many messages, eliminate some, and above all, upgrade the system itself to be more useful.
some specific, unevaluated, off-the-cuff ideas are:
-make logging a null-op if no logger is found, rather than panic and break
-detect jdk 1.4+ logging
-add a trace level
-make it possible to grab a LogSystem instance of sorts, so Velocity extensions can use it more sensibly (i'm tired of the hacks we must do in Tools)
those are just a few ideas, and they might not all even be feasible. still, i'm hoping to take a whack at some of this and hoping that others can help me out. my volunteer time is still rather limited.