Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Java: What's All the Excitement About? (1997)

In this post, Weiqi Gao quietly mentions that the St Louis Java User's Group had a talk by Mark Volkmann, 10 years ago this month, on Java: What's All the Excitement About?

It's a quick, fun read to go back in time with the slides. I don't think we need another "10 year retrospective", but here are some random thoughts.

  • There's dozens of issues that have been wildly successful. Suffice it to say that, despite stumbling out of the gate, Java is certainly a Hall of Fame language and platform.
  • The performance issue is continually pushed to the next layer. Ages ago, C probably wasn't fast enough. Then C++. Then Java. Now it's Groovy and JRuby. Plus ça change, plus c’est la même chose!
  • Garbage collection algorithms have been the "NASA Space Program" of Java: it is amazing what bright people can do with focus and purpose.
  • Webapp technology has changed drastically, and yet the Java space still doesn't agree on a framework.
  • Does anyone explicitly use the Security Manager/policies etc? Perhaps in the EJB space?
  • It's been 10 years of installing Java programs. There are no words better than the drawings on this timely blog which promises sweet relief in Java6.

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