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Make a Little Noise

Posted by editor on December 5, 2008 at 10:56 AM PST

JavaFX for Linux and Solaris is coming. Chill.

OK, before the JavaFX stuff, Roger wanted me to make sure that I reminded everyone that Early Bird Pricing for Mobile, Media, and eMbedded Developer Days ends today. Not that $250 is too dear for a two-day conference packed with great speakers and peers, but $175 is a steal. We're talking, what, one-tenth of the price of JavaOne here? Roger writes, "This years conference features a Keynote by Eric Klein, VP of Java Marketing and a Mobility Roadmap presentation by Craig Gering, Director of Java ME Development. Following that will be 25 technical sessions that will equally cover implementations on phones, media (TV, Blu-Ray, Cable boxes) and embedded devices." In light of yesterday's JavaFX release, he also says that "the conference will be one of the first times for Mobile developers to hear what will be happening with Java FX."

And with that, on to the JavaFX 1.0 release. With server issues resolved, the full-blown site is back, and has attracted a Slashdot article. Predictably, /. griped that "the lack of a Linux or Solaris release is a notable absence", but then again, even James Gosling's giri-blog grumbled about that: "the Solaris/Linux release of JavaFX isn't ready yet, but you can suffer through using OS X or even Windows." And even /. had the sense to link to Joshua Marinacci's explainer blog, which begs a 10-second delay on the predictable "OMG! Why R U L1NUX H8RS! U R teh suck!" tweets to explain that while Linux and Solaris are part of the continuous build, they're not ready yet, whereas Mac and Windows are. And Josh leaves an interesting tidbit for those willing to read behind the lines:

So why didn't we drop those broken features and still ship the rest?

We thought about it but JavaFX means something. It means video and audio. It means accelerated graphics and animation. If we took out some features the it wouldn't really be JavaFX anymore. So we decided to let it bake a little longer until it's ready. It's that simple.

From that, you can infer what isn't working on Linux and Solaris, and some of those are things that have long been sore spots in the Linux community. After all, even Eric Raymond's proposals for turning around Linux's media irrelevance, as presented in 2006's World Domination 201, don't seem to have gone anywhere. Would holding up JavaFX on 98% of desktops in hopes that Linux will get its multimedia act together really be in the interest of Sun or Java? If so, hold your breath and think "everything should be in Ogg" over and over again until you get your wish. The rest of us have better stuff to do.

Indeed, it seems like all our bloggers have downloaded and started working with the JavaFX today, so we've given them the run of today's Weblogs section, starting with David Herron's JavaFX 1.0 is launched. "This is a big deal in some ways in that it is a radical departure from the past image Java has carried. Graphics and animation and media, oh my. Somewhere I heard this phrase This ain't yer dad's Java and it's accurate here. I've long thought if only we put as much attention into client Java as we have server Java that the whole thing would be in a whole 'nother league. We've finally done it, and I hope that we're not too late."

Don't think JavaFX just about running in your browser, either. As James Gosling reports in
JavaFX 1.0 hits FCS! Come and get it!,
"Every marketoid and blogger at Sun is going nuts with it. They tend to emphasis using it for building Rich Internet Applications - RIA has been one of the big industry buzzwords over the past year. But I've been building regular desktop apps with it, and it's great."

Finally, JavaFX engineer Joshua Marinacci talks about the long road to get to 1.0, in
Goodbye Mr A. "So. After a year and a half of sweat and hard work JavaFX 1.0 is here. (Don't worry the next release will be here far, far sooner). Apparently the world was so eager to see JavaFX that it completely overloaded our server. We've got new stuff set up, though, so we should be good to go."

So, with all the interest in JavaFX, the latest Poll asks
"Do you plan to try out the JavaFX 1.0 SDK?" Cast your vote on the front page, then check out the results page for current tallies and discussion.

Atop Java Today, we've put an announcement that we had to hide yesterday as the server got pounded by the throng of interested developers: "JavaFX 1.0 has launched at its home page, There you can watch an introductory video (presented via JavaFX) from Sun's Eric Klein, check out some demos and samples, catch up with the team in the JavaFX Blog, and of course, download the SDK, optionally bundled with NetBeans 6.5."

In other news,
Kirill Grouchnikov's Swing Links of the Week for November 30 makes an interesting reference to Bug 6761033 in Sun's Bug Database. "Use NPAPI for Mac OS X port of new Java Plug-In", indicated as "delivered" for 6u12(b01), refers to a new "prototype of the new Java Plug-In for Mac OS X" that uses Cocoa, making it compatible with Safari but not Firefox. The evaluation suggests Sun "collaborated with Apple to redo the Mac OS X port of the new Java Plug-In as an NPAPI and NPRuntime plugin", and now works with Safari 3.1 and nightly builds of Firefox.

The latest Java Mobility Podcast is

Java Mobility Podcast 62: Microlog , in which Johan Karlsson discusses Microlog, a small logging library for Java ME, with Terrence Barr.

In today's Forums, bjoern_minkmar has a suggestion for space-conscious BD-J developers in Re: How to determine amount of free space on Blu-ray Player hard disk. "Take a look at the class. It can be used to retrieve information about BUDA and ADA, including total space and free space available."

Bob Deen discusses where to get image codecs in
Re: [JAI] JAI, JAI_ImageIO, or ImageIO ?
"All three. Use imageio and more importantly the jai imageio tools to load images. There's a "codec" mechanism built in to JAI, but it's old and should not be used for new code. The new "imageread" (and "imagewrite") operators in the iio tools will help a lot. imageio itself is built in to the JDK, but iio-tools is something you have to download (separate from JAI, but you'll want JAI as well). You may not really need JAI for such a simple app but it provides a lot of capability which might be helpful."

Finally, GlassFish user achugh asks about a
403 access denied error when switching from localhost to machine IP. "I've recently upgraded an existing application that would earlier run on Sun One v7 update 5 to now run on Sun Java App Server v9.1_02. It runs fine over a domain created under the 'developer' profile. I am able to access the web applications from the browser, e.g. when I browse to http://localhost:8080/webapp. However, as soon as I or someone else tries it through the machine address, say -- I get a 403 access denied error after login."

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JavaFX for Linux and Solaris is coming. Chill.


Now for the really impatient, there's Adobe Flash: works on Linux, already installed on nearly 100% of computers, much much smaller download, open source SDK... There's something I don't understand yet: why should we choose JavaFX over Flex ?

I think the position of the request for OGG support on the Bug Parade greatly over estimates its appeal. The real demand is more likely to be for formats like MP3 and H.264, both of which raise legal issues.

Great quote here: "Would holding up JavaFX on 98% of desktops in hopes that Linux will get its multimedia act together really be in the interest of Sun or Java? If so, hold your breath and think "everything should be in Ogg" over and over again until you get your wish. The rest of us have better stuff to do, " are you talking about solaris as well? I've read Eric Raymond's paper, and it states that the media problems are LEGAL and not technical. And as for the OGG format, take a look at the second most requested enhancement for java (bug 4499904), that requests OGG Vorbis and Tarkin support for JMF. It's over SEVEN YEARS old. Furthermore, if anyone needs to get its multimedia act together, its JAVA. JMF has been schizophrenic from day one. It's clear now, after reading this blog, that Sun Java has abandoned the "write once, run anywhere," philosophy. What's really rotten is that the blog is trying to shift responsibility for Sun's abandonment of multiplatform support on Linux, when the fact is that Sun doesn't even support its own solaris platform! If I were using solaris, I'd be very concerned, because solaris users are being discarded like a used piece of toilet paper. Linux users are just being treated like a used kleenex. At least linux and solaris users now know where they stand in the eyes of Sun. And this knowledge is more certain than the promised release date for javaFX on solaris.

You needn't worry mrmorris, the video samples don't work on my Vista machine either (an unsupported media exception!).

> So we decided to let it bake a little longer until it's ready. It's that simple. So basically it's bye bye to the write-once-run-anywhere mantra? That's a bold move considering that's the ulterior driving force behind the Java platform.