Review of JavaFX Script by James L. Weaver

by Ulf on September 4th, 2008

JavaFX Script („JavaFX“ henceforth) is a new way to develop client-side Java GUI applications, comprised of a more declarative code syntax, and some new ways to couple behavior to code. That being the case, it (and by extension, this book) has two audiences: developers proficient in Java who want to learn about JavaFX, and web developers interested in building rich client applications who may not know much (or any) Java.


The Pushing of NetBeans and the Dumbing-down of Java

by Ulf on August 11th, 2008

To me, one of the more useful pieces of the WS-* stack is WS-Security. Web services are out in the open and need proper security. Unfortunately, there isn‘t yet a standard on how to apply WS-Security to a SOAP service, so each SOAP stack does its own thing. The Metro stack -the reference implementation of JAX-WS and a slew of related APIs- is no exception. Recently I was trying to figure out how to apply WS-Security to a  JAX-WS service. Without using NetBeans or GlassFish, neither of which I use. Go ahead, try to find an example of how to do that. The closest I found is this article, which talks about the web service features of Java 6 SE, not JAX-WS per se.

What does Sun know about how Java is used?

by Ulf on July 24th, 2008

John O’Conner -a Sun employee until recently- blogged about his Java experiences outside of Sun. He lists three things in particular that were news to him:

  1. Companies don’t always use the latest JDK for their flagship products.
  2. Teams like the Eclipse IDE.
  3. Java isn’t always the preferred rich client.

Frankly, I’m shocked that this is news to anyone, much less to a Sun employee who’s actively using Java.

Growing a language

by Ulf on July 4th, 2008

Michael Ernest brought this video of a talk by Guy Steele (him of Scheme fame, for you SICP fans, but he’s now with Sun, working on Java) to my attention. It’s about languages that are too small, about why -when creating a language- neither a small nor a large one will do, and what to do about that. It’s also got a really nice twist to it around the 10 minute mark, where there’s an auditorium-sized “Aha!” effect. You won’t regret watching it: Guy Lewis Steele at OOPSLA ’98 (PostScript)

Shrinking a language

Ten years earlier Niklaus Wirth wrote From Modula to Oberon, in which he outlined why in that case the evolution from a language to its successor involved removing more language features than adding new ones. Since Pascal is mentioned in Steele’s talk as an example of a language that didn’t grow much, it’s interesting to see that both Modula and Oberon included a module facility that allowed them to grow seamlessly from the start.