Archive for November 2002

OOP Performance C On NonMS Platforms Topnbspsubscriber Concerns Objectoriented Analysis Amp

OOP, performance, C# on non-MS platforms top subscriber concerns

Object-oriented analysis & design is the topic of most interest to subscribers of my mailing list, with fundamentals of object-oriented programming coming in second. Tuning C# for performance is next, the top-most .NET-specific interest and a topic of perennial interest. I might have guessed these results, but I was surprised to see that “C# on non-Microsoft platforms” comes next, outperforming, for instance, .NET Remoting, multimedia programming, Compact .NET Framework, etc. Did I mention that Thinking in C#, which is available for digital download, works pretty darn well with mono?

Jason Whittington Quoted This Matt Gripes Wrote I

Jason Whittington quoted this: Matt Gripes wrote I’m glad Ximian wrote a C# port to linux, but, at the end of the day, is .NET going to be a uni-platform technology?  [Thinking In .NET]

And then Jason added: This problem is one I’ve been thinking about a lot lately….The real question in my mind is how Microsoft is going to treat the ECMA specification….Library support on different platforms is sure to vary week-to-week, so let’s discount those for a second and concentrate on the fundamentals of the runtime…. [More]

While I share Jason’s interest in whether Microsoft will “play fair” by the standards process, I think that library standardization is the driver of cross-platform deployments (I’m thinking about the history of C/C++). I never agreed with Sun’s contention that programmers would be “tricked” into platform-specifics by typing “//@Import Win32.dll” (or whatever the exact syntax was), but with C# there is no tool that tells you “This code uses only ECMA standard classes and local assemblies.” Without that… Wait a second… Geez, that’d be a useful tool to write…

Winter Vomiting Disease Is Currently Spreading Fast Through Scotla

Winter Vomiting Disease is currently spreading fast through Scotland and northern England. Link (via Exciting Monkey Bum Stories for Boys & Girls)

So that’s what I catch the morning after Christmas parties and New Year’s Eve!

Information Awareness This Article Should Have Been

Information Awareness.

This article should have been an indictment of how the government has failed to protect the voters from identity fraud, and instead protects only the banks and government bureaucrats.  In fact, the government is completely impotent to prevent similar and ongoing fraud — the problems with identity security across the entire economic infrastructure are so systemic and deep that it will take work on many fronts to patch them all.  The paper should just say, “Government surrenders in war on identity fraud.  Three poor people jailed; 30,000 screwed.  You’re next and there’s nothing you can do about it.  Government war against people who copy lame Courtney Love music progressing nicely.” via [Better Living Through Software]

(Am I the only one who likes Courtney Love’s music?)

Cedric Beustsnbspblog Entry From The J2EE NET Smackdown Event Since He W

Cedric Beust’s blog entry from the J2EE / .NET Smackdown event. Since he was in the audience, he was actually able to see the slides! :-) He’s got some good quotes.

Matt Gripes Wrote What About Platform Independence I Thought One Of The Paramount Reasons To Write App

Matt Gripes wrote: What about platform independence? I thought one of the paramount reasons to write applications in Java was “write once, run anywhere”. I like that my java apps work on any platform that has a JVM. When did that become unimportant or unnecessary?

I’m glad Ximian wrote a C# port to linux, but, at the end of the day, is .NET going to be a uni-platform technology?

11/24/02; 12:37:29 AM
 
Yes, if your apps require nothing beyond the capabilities in J2SE, your Java apps can run anywhere except those platforms which only support J2ME. And there are valuable apps that fit that mold: Idea, for instance, is probably the best IDE that I’ve ever seen and I believe that you can run it on a development-quality machine with your choice of OS. But I think for most companies, the ability to use different platforms for different purposes is what’s important: clients can use Palms, Macs, Pocket PCs, and Windows, my Web servers and middle-tiers run on cheap blades, my database server is a multiprocessing honker and I still have the mainframe in the basement to deal with. So I think that for most people, interoperability is significantly more important than replaceability. When it comes to interoperability between machines, you have CORBA, the platform protocol (Java’s RMI or .NET Remoting), and Web Services. Of those, I believe that Web Services are the best route going forward and I believe that .NET leap-frogged J2EE in terms of Web Services.
 
As far as Mono and Gnu Portable .NET go, though, I do not believe that they are today serious alternatives to .NET on Windows. I hope they are one day, but if replaceability of Windows and, say, Linux is a requirement, you should continue to choose Java, C++, or Delphi.

Everett Visual Studio NET 2003 Is Now In

Everett (Visual Studio .NET 2003) is now in final beta and available for download to MSDN subscribers.

Big news for me is that all the code for Thinking in C# (did you know that you can download the digital version?) has been checked and that VSN2K3 (oh yeah, that’s attractive) contains built-in support for programming PocketPCs. It’s simple, simple, simple, and described in Appendix C of TiC#.

J2EE Vs NET Smackdown I Was A Referee Last Night At The J2EE Vs Microsoft Smackdown Event C

J2EE vs. .NET “Smackdown”

I was a “referee” last night at the J2EE vs. Microsoft “Smackdown” event created by SD Forum and held in Redwood Shores. There were about 300 people in the room and afterwards I talked with both teams and both felt that it was a good event, so I think there’s a good chance that the companies will continue to have at least some kind of “on stage” dialogue with each other, which I feel is the key thing.

Questions were prepared by SD Forum and given to both companies in advance, so they (a) weren’t as technically focussed as I probably would have preferred but (b) the companies were able to prepare arguments, with slides and quotes and graphs, which I think was very good. The crowd favored Java, but when I asked how many in the people considered “truly open to the debate” about which platform to choose, a majority of the audience stood.

Several themes emerged: Sun strongly promoted the “community” message while Microsoft had more diverse themes: simplicity == productivity, universal connectivity == heterogeneoous environments, and lower costs. On a purely debating level, I think Sun did a better job of “staying on message” and you did have the sense that the pro-Java crowd noise occasionally damped the Microsoft guys enthusiasm. There was a noticeable exception when Microsoft’s Dave Weller answered a question on cost and just hammered through his slides while shouting “400% productivity increase! 200% productivity increase! … etc …”

On the other hand, Sun slung mud, especially on the question about security. Security is far too important a subject to be “answered” by saying “they suck.” Which was, unfortunately, part of Microsoft’s answer to the Pet Store Application question. “They started it!” was a literal quote and both sides made mention of the fact that the use of the Pet Store Application as a “benchmark” was started by Larry Ellison.

To my surprise and disappointment, Microsoft is absolutely not backing off the use of the Pet Store Application as an “independent middleware benchmark.” Microsoft’s Dino Chelsea showed graphs showing, for instance, SOAP throughput where they did very well; he said that was an area driven by XML serialization/deserialization “and that is something we have optimized the heck out of.” But doesn’t that just raise the question “So if someone writes a lightning-fast XML parser for Java, those ratios might dramatically change? Is that an important datapoint for a CTO trying to make a platform decision?”

During a break, a Sun guy tried to float a trial balloon on the basis by which a lawsuit regarding Pet Store might be founded and I instantly responded with: “In retrospect, do you think the JNI lawsuit was beneficial to the community?” “No,” he said.

Another note I made was that Sun is still making what I think of as the “.NOT YET” argument, the claim that .NET is vaporware. I think that argument is on its last legs and should be retired; Microsoft has pretty good customers running .NET at this point (one that widened my eyes was a Merrill Lynch voice-driven application that does 21,000 transactions per second!). Sun’s Tim (Tom? Something else?) Daly, an Australian guy, did a really nice argument on the importance of middleware benchmarking versus database benchmarking, while Sun’s Sang Shin was clearly the most versed in professional speaking (modulating his voice, controlled arm gestures, etc.) Microsoft’s Weller had the single-strongest presentation with his “cost and productivity” slides.

Afterwards, Alan Zeichick of SD Times (another ref) and I met with Dino Chelsea and Shauna Sickels of Waggener Edstrom. It was primarily just a chance for them to get “face time” with Alan, as SD Times is becoming more and more influential, but we did suggest that it would benefit the community if Microsoft and Sun had a “plug fest” in which they demonstrated Java applets hitting .NET Web Services and .NET rich clients hitting EJB-based Web Services. We suggested that Microsoft trade a booth at PDC for a booth at JavaOne! They pointed out that such a thing would have enormous political obstacles, but I still think it would be good for the community: neither J2EE nor .NET is going to achieve monopoly marketshare and many companies will move forward with applications written on both platforms (Microsoft very clearly acknowledged this reality, which I think is good). There are several natural “join points” (to borrow a phrase from aspect-oriented programming) for integration, but clearly Web Services is the one of most interest to technical managers today.

I think both companies did an excellent job and I was very happy to hear them acknowledge the importance of live events, in a variety of different formats. If an event such as this is organized in your area, I think it’s definitely worth going to: it is, of course, primarily a marketing exercise by both companies, but I think the content was quite substantial and provided audience members a good understanding of the substantive issues of the platform decision.

Byte Going Payperview In Bid To Stay Afloat Byte Was The

Byte going pay-per-view in bid to stay afloat. Byte was the magazine for the personal computer enthusiast “in the day.” Personally, I think that a cycle has come full around and there’s probably demand for a print Byte-like magazine again but in the words of Austin Powers: “Alas, that train has sailed.”

Babymsi Installation Complete Reboot Im Proud To Announce That At 107am This Morni

Baby.msi Installation complete, reboot?

I’m proud to announce that at 1:07am this morning Christina and my first major release went gold. Claire Elizabeth Whittington was born at 8 pounds even.  Mom and baby are both doing fine and are asleep.  Dad is sooo sleepy.  Guess I’ve got plenty more of that to look forward to :)  What, you thought you were going to get away without having to look at pictures?

Congratulations Jason!

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