[rescue] Mozilla Firefox

Charles Shannon Hendrix shannon at widomaker.com
Mon Apr 26 19:51:40 CDT 2004

Mon, 26 Apr 2004 @ 13:34 -0500, Jonathan C. Patschke said:

> Wow.  If I'd had made such an close-minded rant about PCs or Linux, I'd
> probably be flamed off the list.

Damn, whatever.  It wasn't a rant or at all close-minded.  I at first
was going to label you and Dave that way, but I don't really think that.

For what it is worth, I don't hate Java.  I find the basics of it are
fine, and I like the idea.  It's mostly the class libraries that have
come out of the project that I don't like.

It seems that writing really fast Java code means avoiding an awful lot
of the foundation libraries, which is the major point of Java to most
Java projects I've used.

> "Write Once, Run Everywhere" of course only applies to platforms with a
> JVM.  I can't run portable Bourne shell code on my VMS or Windows
> systems, either.  But, when dealing with pure Java code (as opposed to
> code that heavily relies on local functionality like RMI, Java3D, AWT,
> and such), it really does deliver on promise, so long as you CODE TO THE

Well, that's one of the problems.  Java is promoted as a whole system,
the whole thing, and that's also how it is most often used.  Those huge
class libraries are a big part of the draw for many shops.  It's like a
race to see who can use the most "gee whiz" features.

> Would I use it for extremely performance-critical software?  No.  I
> mean, I don't even typically use it for server-side code.  95% of my
> Java code consists of thin user-interfaces that either talk to a piece
> of code written in C that runs locally or over the network to do the
> real work.  That's the sort of code that really makes Java shine.

I think that's how many applications should be written anyway.

I've always hated mixing the UI with the application, outside of the
basic tty interface.

This is especially bad in most WWW programming.  It makes changes to
either UI or application messy.

There can be performance and security problems with the communication
between app and UI, and it is harder to writ, but they aren't all that
hard to solve, and you gain a lot of advantages.  Once you get some
libraries written to handle it, most of the difficulty is gone.

My favorite WWW project was one where I wrote the application in C as a
long-running process.  The WWW code had nothing but the UI, and there
were also command line and X interfaces to the program.

> Second-best is well-written application code.  A programmer who is
> mindful of how the JVM works and how OOP and the garbage collector all
> interact and that has a good knowledge of algorithms, data structures,
> and the proper way to use them can make code that you'd never even
> know was written in Java.

Even sitting on those big foundation classes?  Do you have an example of
a well written application like that I could download and run?

Otherwise, sure, that's all true of most any language.

shannon "AT" widomaker.com -- ["People should have access to the data which
you have about them.  There should be a process for them to challenge any
inaccuracies." -- Arthur Miller]

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