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Java still full of beans

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Jul. 11th, 2007 | 10:13 pm
location: Sasona
mood: nerdynerdy

Allow me to be imprecise. As if you could stop me.

You know, I like Sun as a company, and I'd sort of like them to do well. This gives me mixed feelings about Java-the-language. It's still too wordy to hold my interest, but the bytecode/virtual-machine/JVM/whatchacallit stuff seems useful. JRuby in particular sounds interesting.

So far, the "web frameworks" built on Java have been just as tedious. I spent two weeks porting a rickety site from an older version of a mishmash of JSP/servlets/JSTL/beans/custom tags to more recent versions of the same -- if someone finds a java web framework that works as well as Rails, tell me. I'm done looking for a while.

I'm considering spending a day or two of my own time doing their website over from scratch in Ruby on Rails, just to see how long it takes. Normalize their database, run Rails' scaffolding, apply a little CSS, and call it done. For your average low-to-medium-traffic, content-driven website that's MORE than adequate.

A better way to get close to "write-once, run-anywhere" is to write LESS. Less code. Less tapping on keyboards. Incrementally rewrite bits of the language so that it addresses your problem domain directly and your code starts to disappear. I know I'm not saying anything new here.

I blame Emacs for keeping me from learning Lisp when I should have, back in 1993 or so.

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Comments {2}

dr. pangloss


from: denshi
date: Jul. 12th, 2007 04:15 am (UTC)

There's just not enough reflection available at runtime.

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Triple Entendre

Re: JoR

from: triple_entendre
date: Jul. 12th, 2007 04:29 am (UTC)

And what's with the completely uninformative error messages? JSP + JSTL + beans was *evil* about this. If you don't *know* the magic capitalization rules for "getters and setters", there's absolutely nothing that tells you what you're doing wrong until you google up someone who has the same confusion, and even then it's only deep in the thread where a knowledgeable person explains.

And the usual sorts of places I'd look for contextual help say only a tiny bit and then refer you to the Official Spec, which might as well be written in an alien tongue -- not the barest hint of how to string the tokens together, not a single line of example code. It's as if it was written by Computer Science majors. Oh wait.

I *am* enjoying using the NetBeans 5.5 IDE, though. I'm going to try the preview of 6.0, which claims significant support of Ruby.

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