Moving on

Tim Wood tw00 at doc.ic.ac.uk
Tue Jun 12 19:02:20 PDT 2001


Hi,

At 17:52 -0700, on 2001-06-12. Andy typed:

>I may get some flak for this, but has anyone considered java? I don't know
>the ins and outs of how feasible this would be, but it's a very clean,
>forgiving language with great exception support and so on. It's use also
>promotes good design (usually) because of its
>"almost-everything-is-an-object" stance. Good design would be it very
>flexible for extending the code etc.

A while ago I used Java to write some medium scale distiributed
systems. If ALFS for instance wanted to have profiles served from
somwhere to the backend (for automated building of multiple hosts), then
java would be a good choice (RMI, CORBA, etc). Java is also good at
adaptaive simple GUIs. It is unquestionably easyier and more forgiving
to program in than C and C++ but of course it is not nativley compiled
so reqiures a VM to be running.  It is designed to be portable so using
external programs (like GCC) is a bit frowned upon... but this is a
special circumstance (compiling an OS from source).

The XML support is supposed to be good but I have never used it in any
depth. See http://xml.apache.org particularly Xerces. In general there
is _a lot_ of code (classes, modules, libraries) available for Java
programs.

The other question is about an opensource Java-VM, Jikes is an
opensource "compiler" (produces byte-code) from IBM. Is there a _good_
open source VM as well? I don't know of one (or am not aware it is open
source). Does this matter? The VMs can be a bit heavy weight, what sort
of machines are you aiming at? Pentium up or are you wanting to install
on 486DX2 + 8MB ram (of which I have a couple).

I would like to offer my assistance on this project (Java or not), I
can do code, profile writing/testing, whatever....

Tim
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