Interview: Chet Haase discusses Java FX, Update N and JDK 7
In this interview from QCon San Francisco 2007, former Sun client architect Chet Haase discusses Java SE 6 Update N, the Java Kernel, Java FX, the shift in focus to consumer desktop features in Java 7, and redesigning of applets.
Watch Chet Haase discusses Java FX, Update N and JDK 7 (22 minutes).
From the interview:
The most recent thing that has happened in the Java space was the release of Java SE 6 which was December of 2006, lots of very cool desktop features in there, some of my personal favorites. But it was after that or about the time that we released it that we realized we need to have more of a consumer focus and fix some of the issues in the consumer space. The drivers for the Update N release which we are working hard on and should be in beta sometime soon now is mainly in the deployment space. So it's the realization that if we want to be a player in the consumer world, we actually need to fix some of the longstanding issues which we have known about but which frankly weren't that critical in the enterprise space.
On how Java Kernel will speed up download and startup time:
It would certainly depend on the application; my favorite example is Limewire. We did a simple test where we basically ran Limewire for a couple of minutes so we got all the stuff that happens at start up as well as menu interactions, and stuff that was being lazily loaded in the GUI. Limewire is a graphically-oriented file-sharing application and so it has a lot of Swing functionality for a rich GUI, it also uses XML processing for dealing with data coming in. And it also does a lot of networking transactions and when we printed out the class list of everything that it dragged in from rt.jar as well as all of the native files that it touched, it came out to something under 4 Mb and this was compared to something around 10-11 Mb for the actual full JRE. In this case it was 30-40% to run Limewire for that first couple of minutes compared to getting nearly three times that for the full JRE for a normal install.
On Sun's vision with JavaFX:
Making consumer-oriented applications easier to develop and deploy. One of the things that is interesting about Java FX is that it takes advantage of capabilities that are already in the platform, for the most part. It also adds some nice features on top. But it allows easy creation of applications that have animated components and graphics and easily declared animations, very whizzy, dynamic, involving user experiences. You can do that stuff right now using Swing and Java2D but it is not necessarily obvious how to do that. To do that kind of stuff with Swing you need to be a fairly sophisticated Swing developer. The idea with Java FX script is to make it much easier to create that kind of application so that maybe we can actually see more of these types of applications out there for the Java platform.