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From Andrzej Bialecki ...@getopt.org>
Subject Re: Lucene and Java 1.5
Date Tue, 30 May 2006 20:18:59 GMT
Doug Cutting wrote:
> Chuck Williams wrote:
>> I still don't understand why environments that are years behind in java
>> and most other apps should expect to be on the latest and greatest 
>> lucene.
>
> Yes, it is clear to me that you don't.  The key thing is these people 
> are fellow members of the Lucene community and we should respect their 
> concerns even when we don't fully understand them.  We want to avoid 
> forking and we want to avoid ill will.
>
> GCJ is an important platform for Lucene.  To the best of my knowledge, 
> Wikipedia's search uses Lucene on GCJ (at least it used to).  Folks 
> who use Lucene from non-Java languages also use GCJ.  Not having 
> access to new Lucene features and optimizations will burden folks who 
> use GCJ. GCJ's development lags Sun's substantially.

If I understood the discussion correctly, so far I haven't seen any 
strong (compelling?) arguments for moving to 1.5 syntax apart from 
purely aesthetic benefits. 'For' loops? Auto-boxing? Generics? Static 
imports? This is just a dressing on the cake ... There are even tools 
that can re-wire the bytecode so that it's 1.4-compatible again, which 
shows how superficial these changes really are 
(http://retroweaver.sourceforge.net/).

It's clearly not dictated by performance gains either - we can compile 
1.4-compatible code using 1.5 compiler and run the binary on 1.5 JVMs, 
getting exactly the same performance as if the source was 1.5-compatible ...

If we switched to 1.5 syntax, would PyLucene still work? I doubt it. 
Would any well-entrenched WebSphere-based shops be ready to upgrade to 
1.5? I doubt it too.

OTOH, I'm not stuck with any environment that really has no choice but 
to use 1.4, so I personally cannot say that I must use 1.4. I have this 
feeling also that if we allow (not require) 1.5 syntax we'll end up with 
a code that has inconsistent style. From this point of view, it would be 
better to make a switch once and for all, but at a later date, when 1.5 
is so ubiquitous as 1.4 was when we made the conscious switch to use 
java.util.* collections instead of Vectors and Hashtables.

So, it's -0.5 from me ... ;)

-- 
Best regards,
Andrzej Bialecki     <><
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