Tuesday, 14 December 2010

The Apache which leaved the reunion

Apache is flown away
Me and Mix (a friend of mine) have a very different opinion about Java: he totally dislikes it, but I think it's good on servers.
Two days ago, Apache leaved Java Community Process, because it disagree Oracle's decision to don't release for free tools to check a Java implementation compatibility. This is an ugly decision, because it will make very difficult (or impossibile?) to check if (e.g.) Apache Harmony is a Java compliant implementation.
Oracle is handling Java as a colony, ignoring what the Java Comunity did in these years. Oracle is pressing to morph Java into a "personal language".

When Mix sent me this news, I throws my hand in the sky saying «well, we will program in python or PHP» and I was serious. I used Java in few projects in these years and no-one end successfully. In the low-medium market, where I work and where work at least 70% of programmers, Java is never used because:

  1. it's more difficult to write a JSP than a PHP page
  2. it's more difficult to use Hibernate than Ruby on Rails
  3. Swing is slower than QT or than WXpython or than TKinter
  4. it's harder to use an XML as configuration file than using a python/ruby/php/lua dictionary/hash

Many big competitors use Java for their work and they have many powerfull tools, such as JUnit, Log4J, Ant, Geronimo, Batik, Cayenne, Cocoon and many more, developed by Apache Foundation.

I am tired to talk about Java: Oracle, Apache, IBM and Google are playing with it in a very boring way. C/C++ didn't have all Java troubles because the language and the standard library were free to be developed by everybody. Java was once strictly managed by Sun and now by Oracle. This decision cut off necessary freedom from Java to transform it as "language of choice". People still use C/C++ because they're faster; use Ruby or Python because they're easier; and because people aren't interested to portability.

Maybe Java, as we know it, is going to dead. Maybe we'll see two branches, the one "official" made for servers (supported by Oracle, IBM and RedHat) and the "mobile" one, supported by Apache and Google for Android platform.
Future's unknown. Until the next "big" revolution, let's script.
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