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From "Robin Green" <gree...@hotmail.com>
Subject Standard compilation JSR (was Re: Where is sun.tools.javac documented?)
Date Sat, 08 Apr 2000 16:33:00 GMT
Jose Alberto Fernandez <jofernan@us.oracle.com> wrote:

>All this talk about javac and what should be visible and what should
>not, just points out the need for the Java Specs to define a standardize
>way to access a Java Compiler. With JSPs and other technologies
>that require compilation of generated code it should be obvious that
>we cannot continue using javap to try to solve this problem.
>
>Perhaps we need something similar to JAXP (the standarizd API for
>XML parsers) that all Java compiler providers should support to make
>tools portable to different environments.
>
>Anyone willing to make an JSR out of this?
>

V. Good idea!

It would be useful if this spec would support advanced options only supplied 
by some compilers - such as dependency checking in Jikes (FOOTNOTE: -depend 
is buggy in Sun's javac, and was disabled in JDK1.3's new compiler), and 
(looking to the future) incremental compilation support, for integration 
into IDEs in particular. Otherwise the spec would not be much of an advance. 
Perhaps the best way to do this, allowing for any number of new features, 
would be to have a queryable feature-set mechanism, with a public registry 
of features on a web site. So, the feature "dependency checking" (suitably 
precisely defined) would be given a key of, say, "DEPEND", and any other 
compiler using this feature would also use that same key in its feature set, 
rather than defining its own. Some features, like incremental compilation, 
would perhaps have to have new APIs defined for them, but this would all be 
done through a standards process.

Kind of like the concept of BeanInfo objects, but with public standards as 
to what the keys meant.

Is this clear, or do I need to explain it further?

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