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Good news, JRuby developers coming to Sun

Posted by robogeek on September 7, 2006 at 5:24 PM PDT

I've written more than a few blog entries pondering the strategic goodness possible from supporting multiple languages on the Java VM. Just this morning I was saying to myself, who cares what language is at the top of the stack so long as it's on the Java VM! And this afternoon I learn that we're moving to support JRuby development by hiring the JRuby core developers.

The JRuby guys get hired by Sun ... JRuby Steps Into the Sun ... JRuby Love .. and each of those has further links.

Okay, so it may seem a little controversial what I said above. I love the Java language, but I know that Java isn't the be-all-end-all-language-that-serves-everybody. There's obviously lots of other interesting languages out there. So why be steadfast that Java is the one true language? Why not support multiple languages?

In fact for years the Java VM has supported multiple languages. With Java 6 there is new support that explicitly helps a language integrate with the Java VM.

I've discussed before the advantage as I see it. Namely, the language developer can reuse the whole of the Java ecosystem. The language impelementor doesn't have to invent a language interpreter or compiler .. they just use the Java runtime. The community around the language doesn't have to reimplement the world of database access, XML processing, image processing, network I/O, security controls, etc, they can just reuse the features already provided by the Java runtime. win-win-win-win

A good place to start today on multiple languages for the Java VM is the scripting.dev.java.net/ project.

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