It’s finally time to accept it; Java is the way forward. After messing about with Objective C (currently tied to Apple’s Cocoa — see BIBSYSSearch.app, if you’re interested in a NeXTSTEP-type, library project in this language — Mac OS X/PPC only), I have finally come to realise that Java is the de facto standard. Why?
- Cross-platform support
- BIBSYS’s development platform
- NTNU’s development platform
- FRIDA development
- It’s “Good”
First and foremost, Java is truly cross-platform; no other language can actually be run out-of-the-box on any operating system with a compatible runtime. Yes, the runtime thing is a pain, but I have yet to see any great initialization-speed issues for the lightweight applications that consumers use, and the server applications aren’t initialized every five minutes anyway.
Points two–four all revolve around what our suppliers have chosen, and are thus beyond our control. Note that NTNU seems to be focussing on J2EE & Oracle for the time being.
Point five: Java is a well-though-through language, Smalltalk-based, automatic garbage-collection, secure object-model, etc. All of these are things we like.
So, NTNU librarians, what are you waiting for, VB.NET? He-he.