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Home Page Editorial
(June 13,  2001)

From Publisher and Managing Editor's Desk... 

JavaOne Conference (held in San Francisco June4-6) Establishes Java As Preferred Application Development Environment

JavaOne conference last week in San Francisco set a tone for application development in a number of ways. We make some observations on this important event. 

  1. In our view, time for Java-based development has come. Java application development platform in its different incarnations (kernel development SDK's for product developers, J2ME for handheld and embedded devices, J2EE, Java beans and a host of application integration connectors) has become a matured platform. No longer do you need to poke fun at Java enthusiasts that their code will break down every thirty minutes. On handhelds and smart phones, it breaks down only once a day now - huge progress, we say. In server environments, it is highly stable. Do we remember how long do competing platforms stay alive without a hiccup? Sure, there is room for more improvement and stable operation for Java but any software that grows so fast will go through a similar environment. Therefore, you must emphasize thorough application and product testing.  See our story on NTT DoCoMo experience. 

  2. Java has, by far, the widest hardware platform reach - from tiny embedded systems, smart phones, handhelds, servers and large enterprise application servers. In our view, no other product can match that. 

  3. J2ME has attracted strong following from large systems integrators like IBM and wireless vendors like Motorola, Nokia, NTT DoCoMo, RIM and others. Nokia has said that it will ship 100 million Java-enabled phones by the end of 2003. 

  4. Microsoft's .NET initiative does not address the same requirements.  More importantly, it does not have the same product and platform reach.  We would gladly publish arguments from .NET enthusiasts.

  5. Right at this juncture, there is a significant population trained around the world in Java technology. If 20,000 attendees at this year's conference alone is any indication, we do have a pretty good trained resource to meet our development needs. It appears to us that every young computer science graduate from a university or a vocational college has some Java coding experience.

  6. In a survey of 521 developers conducted by Evans Data market research company during February 2001, 29.7% opted for J2ME, 24.5% for Palm, 22.3% for Windows, 6.8% Linux, 2.3% EPOC, 14% others). See summary page on Evans Data site. 

  7. It is true that Palm economy boasts of over 100,000 developers.  However, most of these developers are not true enterprise application programmers with C++ and Java skills and are not charged with the task of serious enterprise applications. Many of these applications are simple offline applications that extend the capabilities of Palm. Please do not get us wrong - we are not belittling the applications that they are writing. We are just putting them in the right class. In our estimation, serious functionally-rich and performance-efficient applications that can be integrated with backend J2EE-controlled application servers (there are plenty of them around now) and enterprise super-servers can be built only on Java platform. PalmOS will take quite a while, if at all, to reach that breadth.

  8. In order to build optimized applications on small foot print handheld devices, we advise product developers to consider a hybrid approach - native SDKs like BREW for low-level hardware drivers and Java for applications. We urge vendors like Qualcomm to support Java wholeheartedly. We strongly believe that it is in their interest to do so.

  9. We urge Sun to be more open than it has been in letting Java brew out of the coffee pot which seems to have a rather tight lid. 

Chander Dhawan - Your Site's Principal Consultant and Publisher

Do you want to make any comments on this editorial? Send us an e-mail.

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