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From "Craig R. McClanahan" <>
Subject RE: [codec] More thoughts on CharSets and Encoders (references: R E: [codec] Streamable Codec Framework)
Date Thu, 22 Jan 2004 09:10:43 GMT
Quoting Gary Gregory <>:

> (1) "eventually" is, sadly I think, a ways off in the future. See
> discussions on this list WRT J2ee containers, WebSphere, most common
> installed base of such containers, etc.

<personal-viewpoint author="craigmcc">

As a major proponent of long-term support for existing packages that want to do
evolutionary development, this is an important issue.  My own experience with
Struts (which still supports Servlet 2.2 / JSP 1.1) says that this is important
for existing users.  And it will continue to be.  *Nobody* in the real world
can migrate to more current technologies as fast as the developers of those
technologies would wish that they could.

However, I get really impatient with this reality for *future* users. 
Jakarta projects tend to focus on the "what is widely deployed now" scenario --
but limiting ongoing development to this kind of platform is *very* bad for the
Java platform in the long run.

Personally, I will continue to invest effort in supporting existing users of
Apache/Jakarta packages I contribute to.  But my primary focus for future
efforts are going to be focused on leveraging the platforms that are more
current in the mainstream ... with the expectation that folks on platforms that
don't have this current support *will* be taken care of by the time that the
revolutionary software is (if it ever is) ready for general release.

As such, I'm personally not interested in working on any revolutionary Struts
Commons designs that do not presume at least J2SE 1.4 / J2EE 1.4 as the base
platform as the minimum requirement.  That's not to say that the needs of
exisiting pre-1.4-based users, or non-mainstream platforms that don't support
SE/EE 1.4, aren't important --- nothing could be further from the truth! -- but
limiting the ongoing development of Jakarta-based software (overall, the
convention seems to be to support JDK 1.2 as the minimum platform with some
packages supporting 1.1 compatible versions) is going to be very detrimental to
the long-term success of the Java platform.

The JDK 1.2 environment was *years* ago ... when a 256mHz PC was the tip of the
state of the art.  Would you willing to accept being required to work on such a
hardware system today?

It's time for us to recognize that there are *millions* of mainstream users,
*can* provide a 1.4 baseline runtime environmment -- and, as a whole, the
Jakarta community is not paying enough attention to what kinds of capabilities
can not be assumed.  Lets *stop* limiting our revolutionary advances by an
assumption that we have to be backwards compatible with what (in computer
terms) is now considered the Iron Age of computing.

Craig McClanahan

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