Some answer to questions you did and didn’t ask
Am I the only person learning Scala that uses Maven and Eclipse?
No, probably not, but you’re most likely in the minority. That’s OK, you’re allowed to use any build tool you prefer, obviously.
I wonder which one is growing or declining faster. I would suspect that maven is growing faster in Scala Usage than SBT as more and more java developers start learning the language since they are already familiar with maven.
I think this is projection from your side. From your posts, you seem to be under the impression that Maven is obviously the better tool for real world users, and that any data that shows Maven isn’t a very popular tool for building scala probably is wrong or misleading or soon to be outdated.
Using a programming language as the build tool.
I don’t think this is a problem at all. In Maven they use XML schema as a (declarative) programming language to program Maven to build your project. Scala is not domain-specific, but a general-purpose programming language. Maven quickly shows that if you want to build things you didn’t expect, you need to write plugins in a general-purpose programming language in order to support the domain-specific language to be able to do what you want.
The hardcore Scala world made up of developers that actually started with Scala in Academia, SBT will continue to be the build framework of choice.
This is anti-intellectual bullshit. I’m sorry, but I have to call a spade a spade here. You’re putting away programmers who have a different preference in build tools away as if they are some sort of dusty ivory tower irrelevant idiots who have no idea how the real world works, and you’re doing so based on absolutely nothing other than your gut feeling that Maven is so obviously better, people choosing to use SBT over it must have some external reason, but Real Programmers who program real things in the real enterprise world will surely see the superiority of Maven.
SBT sure is complicated, it feels way more complicated than it should be
It sure is. Boy is SBT a pain in the ass at times. And it’s ridiculously complex and convoluted. I’m eagerly looking towards cbt and mill to see if they do better - or maybe a more principled approach will grow out of typelevel some day. I’d love to see that too. I’m convinced we can do a lot better than SBT. But I’m also pretty sure that Maven is not a lot better than SBT.