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Not a Technical Issue

Posted by daniel on July 29, 2003 at 11:22 AM PDT

You see a need for hole to be filled in a particular software offering or API. It's just so obvious. It wouldn't be that hard to do. You ask, "Why don't they just < fill your favorite pet peeve here>". Often the barrier to accomplishing your goal is not a technical issue.

I've covered Java on the Mac for a variety of publications over the last seven years or so. It's a lot happier beat these days - but there are still gaps. Every time the Apple Java team opens the floor up to questions they get asked "where is Java3D" and "where is JAI". This is such a regular occurrence that they now pre-empt the questions by saying, "before we take questions, here's the deal with Java3D and JAI". The QuickTime team provided a nice set of Java APIs. At presentations their team always gets asked about porting the technology to other platforms.

"The issues involved in making this happen are not technical," are the answers to all of the above. It probably is also the answer to why your favorite enhancement hasn't happened yet. Resources, copyright, marketing, legal, no local champion, politics,...

On a recent project a team I was working with presented two demos to a client. The first demo was an implementation of the spec that the client had signed off on. The second demo was an implementation that addressed some of the short comings of the first approach. The client representatives in the room liked it and took it back to their group for approval. The answer that came back was, "it's great but we don't have time to implement it." We scratched out heads. There was nothing left to implement. It had been delivered feature complete. The issues clearly weren't technical.

It struck me as I looked over today's Java Today

page that this theme pervades the offerings on the site today.

In today's featured Weblogs Chris Adamson looks at recent announcements and tries to read the tea leaves about The End (of Java3D) and the Beginning (of JOGL). Sun's Chris Campbell takes his Sun hat off half-way to respond in Co-existence of Java2D, Java3D, JOGL, and Mac-n-Cheese Although he never really gets to the Mac-n-Cheese part, Campbell tries to draw the lines between JOGL and the existing Java media APIs. Finally, Alan WIlliamson presents his take on a huge "not a technical issue" in who pays for open-source?"

the newly created

In the Also Today section, we link to today's live chat on New Java Programming Language Features in J2SE 1.5 with Joshua Bloch and Neal Gafter. Dick Gabriel summarizes a talk on intellectual property rights given at Sun by Stanford lawyer Larry Lessig in Gabriel's blog The Three Bears - Lessig on Property RIghts. Gabriel raises the big Java "not a technical issue" and invites your comments.

Steve Mallett, the Java Today news editor has gathered the following
Java Today News Headlines : "Web Services transaction problems addressed in new specs", "OpenGL: Java integration, new spec, v1.5", "Linux wars: Big Blue strikes back", "Apache OJB (Object Relational Bridge) 1.0 RC4 released", "Book Review: Ant Developer's Handbook", "Three JSR Final Ballot Approvals", and "Economy Slows Web Services Development".

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