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The Big Question...

Posted by daniel on June 18, 2004 at 8:56 AM PDT

For the Java community, there has only been one issue that could be labeled "The Big Question". Looks as if there's a keynote session on it.

Maybe not a keynote. As others have written, it's not easy to find the keynote listings for this year's JavaOne. That's mainly because they are no longer called keynotes - they are "General Sessions". This follows a trend at recent technology conferences. I never understood how these conferences had four or five keynotes - but didn't spend much time thinking about it. In any case, you can find the sessions formerly known as keynotes here.

Turn to day 4 and look down the page to the panel discussion that is titled The Big Question... Here's the description:

Numerous individuals and organizations suggest that JavaTM technology adopt a new community and development model. This panel will dive into the tangle of granular technical and legal issues, including the potential tradeoff between technologist's calls for openness vs. the market's demand for compatibility. Panelists include leading technologists, experts on legal and copyright issues, top industry analysts, and mainstream users of the technology.

This could be a huge moment but there are many unanswered questions in this description. Who are the panelists? Unless panelists belong to more than one category, this sounds like a pretty big group. Who is moderating the panel? Will they get to real issues in front of us? Is this a conversation starter? Will the discussion move to some forum where we can participate?

A "new community and development model." Sounds as if they could really be ready to address "The Big Question".

The Stripping down J2SE discussion has taken off
in today's Forums. JWenting suggests that we "make it policy to remove anything deprecated 2 versions later. ...That will clean a whole lot of crud out of the core APIs there and then. Combine that with a program to remove redundant functionality (by declaring it deprecated so it gets killed 2 releases later) and you have a powerful tool to get people to stop using old stuff like Vector and StringTokenizer."

JavaKiddy writes that "
One programmer's needless bloat
is another programmer's must-have feature. ... If we start stripping chunks out of Java now, this will only break backwards compatability and serve to further instill confusion and FUD in IT managers and non-techie end users. If we segment Java into smaller, dynamically fetchable, downloads we only reduce the scale of the problem, not solve it."

MThornton says that "the worst aspect of the deprecated methods is where, when extending a class, you have to override the deprecated method rather than its replacement to obtain correct behaviour. This makes it extremely difficult to remove such methods because even new code has been forced to use them."

In Also in Java Today Massimilano Bigatti shares some solution principles that he has labeled Web Services Integration Patterns, Part 1. In the first part he introduces four domain patterns: service proxy, proxy with channel, service coordinator, and service simulator.

Steve Holzner has just published his book on developing with Eclipse. You can download the version 3.0 milestone build M9 and follow along as he shows you how to get the most out of developing, building and running Java code in Java Development on Eclipse, Part 1.

In today's
Weblogs, John Bobowicz writes more about how you can get involved with the Fairness Board.

James Gosling is preparing for a week with no sleep. In Mob-o-geeks he writes "I was just talking to some the the conference organizers, and based on early registrations JavaOne this year is going to be noticably bigger than last year. Should be fun. My schedule is already a nightmare. Sleep will be a rare thing. Too many parties!"

Keep up with your favorite RSS feeds via email. In today's Projects and Communities check out the Java Desktop Community's fetchrss uses RSS to poll your favorite sites for updates, then e-mails updates to you, where you can flag or sort them.

The Jini community's AutoT project is "a dynamic distributed testing framework" which now "contains a new Web Console for managing
a large set of test orders and a large pool
of test resources."

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