Thursday, February 24, 2005

The Java Platform

RMH is writing a book about the "Java Platform". It's not just any book, and I applaud him for taking the particular step of saying it's not a for-profit venture and it's not going to be a traditionally organized, TOC'd and outlined book. (Although he may as well just collect blog posts about the java platform for a period of time and collect them together and say "This is Java".)

One thing in particular in his preface struck me -- the mention of J2ME and J2EE not being long on the world. I think this is sensible; more and more people are finding great ways of innovating on the core JVM and language platform itself, the Groovies and AspectJs and CGLIBs and Picocontainers of the world are all based on the core J2SE platform. J2EE is just Sun's officially sanctioned way of building enterprise applications. Beyond perhaps .war and web.xml files, there's really not much else in J2EE that will have a long life in the Java world (although any BEA-er, JBossian, Oracle-ite or IBMian appserver vendor would like to tell you otherwise).

As for J2ME, it will simply be obsoleted by its bigger brother. At some point mobile device technology will mature enough to be able to host the full J2SE stack and we won't have to worry about obfuscating and re-jarring class files and developing in a completely different way than we would for standard Java applications.

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