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From Stefano Mazzocchi <stef...@apache.org>
Subject Re: How ASF membership works and what it means
Date Thu, 26 Jun 2003 02:50:24 GMT
on 6/24/03 6:55 AM Dirk-Willem van Gulik wrote:

> Then perhaps my observation means absolutely nothing - and I should really
> try to get my mind around a fundamentally different development model (and
> some aspect you call WORA).

Oh, sorry, WORA := Write Once Run Anywhere. It's java's first
commandament. Basically, it's bullshit: java runs everywhere because all
virtual machines descend from the same codebase (in fact, those exotic
virtual machines like Kaffe or natively-gcc-compiled are not used
because the number of small incompatibilities/deficiencies is simply too

WORA translates automatically into Java's biggest sin: native code. Java
programmers were tough the religion of "java purity" as the only way to
purify their souls from the "sin of native code".

This is the reason why we basically we have mod_* where * is any
programming language, but not mod_java, there is no java API that mimics
the HTTPD API because we preferred to avoid the "sin" of doing JNI (java
native interface) and preferred the socket disconnected way with mod_jserv.

note that for apache 1.3.x, JNI would have been hard because of the
multi-process environment, but for apache 2.0, a JNI-based mod_java is
perfectly valid architecturarely, but nobody works on it because of this
"sin" syndrome.

Also, java programmers tend *not* to have any knowledge of things like
"how to link a library in a native environment". basically they are
totally isolated, which leads to concepts such as server microkernel
architectures (avalon Phoenix) which look cool from a purely
architectural perspective, but are totally weak from a security and
stability perspective, because they use one JVM for the entire thing, a
very weak setup.

Pier is probably the only person I know who has great capacity on both
sides of the fence and he tried to add unix deamon-like capabilities to
java but crushed into several JCP walls where native stuff is still seen
as a sin.

Note how Java failed on the client side because of how slow swing is.
Eclipse introduces SWT, something that Sun really disliked because of
considered again a "sin" to have something OS-specific.

Again, the culture difference between java and python, for example, is
that python has OS-specific features, java does not and will never.

java is based on a common denominator. Python is based on giving access
to what you have.

note how apple provides OS-specific hooks to java and native alternate
implementations of java libraries (such as swing). we'll see how much
this impact the java purity concept.

this is just to show how peculiar the java development culture is.

personally, I feel ashamed I was not able to see that this WORA concept
is just bullshit and that I wasn't able to see how mentally limiting
this "pure java" thing is.

But it's far from common to have language open mindness in the java
world and this is due to this purity religion.

>>>->	the java world seems to need amazing number of indians (or
>>>	committers) relative to lines of codes or bugs fixed. And seems
>>>	to see more isolated pockets of people than the xml and other
>>>	parts of the ASF.
>>I don't get what you mean here, can you elaborate more?
> Actually - an extension of your Agora should propably be better at
> showing and modeling it; I was basically looking at commit-scope of people
> in a single code bases across projects. And had the impression that we see
> smaller scope activity, by more people relative to total project activity;
> and more often by people who only work on that part - but do not
> 'participate' in the larger architecture and structure.

I see. But gathering this data would be a pretty hard CVS datamining
problem. Anyway, agora can visualize any structure you come out with so
if you want to experiment with it, it would be very cool and I might
even be able to help you.

> But the latter part is not really proper statistics. Let me try to back
> that up when I have some time.

Cool, let me know when you come up with some data to show.


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