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From "Eric Holley (JIRA)" <>
Subject [jira] [Commented] (GROOVY-8329) Consider statically typed/compiled as default for Groovy 3.0
Date Wed, 17 Oct 2018 16:44:00 GMT


Eric Holley commented on GROOVY-8329:

I've been using Groovy for a number of years now (love it) and I have to say that I @CompileStatic
most all of my classes. I have a suggestion for a future release of Groovy regarding the static/dynamic
compilation issue. Currently, it is the responsibility of the object caller (methods, getters,
setters) to determine if code should be compiled dynamically or statically. This decision
requires knowledge of the called class with regard to if it implements dynamic behavior or
not. It would seem to me that if classes that implement dynamic behavior were annotated (e.g.
@Dynamic,) the compiler could make the decision of how to call the object for the user. This
would allow the compiler to generate static calling code for all referenced non-dynamic classes
and dynamic calls for those classes specifically marked as @Dynamic. By dynamic behavior,
I mean that the class uses the MOP to trap method calls and either override their implementation
or provide implementations for missing methods. A further improvement would be to add a parameter
to @Dynamic that would give the class writer the ability to indicate that defined getters/setters/methods
should be treated as static calls and never overridden by a dynamic call trap. This would
allow @Dynamic classes to have static behavior for defined g/s/methods. This could be fine-tuned
by allowing defined g/s/methods to be annotated with @Dynamic to exclude them from this static
behavior. Of course this would all have to be though out to ensure there is no legacy code
breakage (compiler switches?) If I'm missing something here, please chime in, but I believe
that this is something that could be doable.

> Consider statically typed/compiled as default for Groovy 3.0
> ------------------------------------------------------------
>                 Key: GROOVY-8329
>                 URL:
>             Project: Groovy
>          Issue Type: New Feature
>            Reporter: Endre StĂžlsvik
>            Priority: Major
> Personally, I do not understand why anyone would ever want to drop typing from JVM based
languages (or in any other language, for that matter). Thus, I only started using Groovy "for
real" when I discovered the @CompileStatic annotation, which really made everything great!
> If I could choose, I'd go for statically typed by default, with @DynamicCompile or somesuch
as an annotation I could turn on for methods that uses the XML parsing features etc.
> To me, it seems like more and more people are realizing that statically typed languages
is the way to go, notice e.g. TypeScript, Facebook's retrofitting of types onto PHP with Hack,
and even PHP's own typing in PHP 7.
> Now with Kotlin joining the fray of JVM-based languages, whose literally first two words
on the wepage is "statically typed", getting special support in Spring, and - notably - getting
full support in Gradle, I'd say that this applies more than ever. If Groovy "looses Gradle"
to Kotlin due to the ability to get a statically typed build script (oh, the joy!), I believe
Groovy will have a much harder time attracting new users. Turning Groovy into one of the statically
typed JVM languages, instead of hampering users with "everything is an Object"-based runtime
resolution, will increase the appeal of the language.
> The 3.0 can be a great point to change this. It could of course be reverted back to previous
logic by some -D switch (would need support in IDEs too, I guess), or by sticking some magic
"whole-sale annotation" at the top of the source file, or something like this.

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