Applet accelerating Java update M.I.A.
Last minute glitch kills welcoming party
Sun Microsystems planned to push out a significant update to Java today, but a last-minute snag has made its date of arrival uncertain.
A Sun spokeswoman told us a problem was discovered during final testing of the release candidate of Java Standard Edition 6 Update 10. However, the company would not specify the problem or its severity. Sun said its presently evaluating the issue and can't say when the upgrade will now be ready for public consumption.
Meanwhile, the company says users shouldn't shrug off the still forthcoming update based on its clunky name, Java SE 6u10. It's true that Java updates, unlike major releases, don't mess with any public APIs, and are generally limited to bug fixes. But this time around, Sun has added some interesting new features in hopes of spurring an internet applet revival.
In particular, Sun is trying to tackle the sluggish pace in which Java apps first load.
The new Java Quick Starter pre-fetches portions of the Java Runtime Environment (JRE) into memory, decreasing the average launch time during a cold start-up.
Sun is also adding Java Kernel, a new distribution method to let Java software load faster. Instead of downloading the full (14.5MB) JRE, users receive a smaller installer (4.5MB) that includes only the most commonly required components. Additional pieces are downloaded as needed in the background.
Update 10 includes a hardware accelerated graphics pipeline based on the Microsoft Direct3D 9 API. Sun said it results in better rendering of applications that rely on translucency, gradients, and other graphical tricks of the trade.
Java's user interface is getting a (supposedly more cross-platform friendly) makeover too. The new look is called Nimbus, replacing the Windows XP-ish Ocean theme introduced in Java SE 5.
SwingSet3 in Nimbus
Sun said Nimbus is drawn entirely using Java 2D vector graphics (rather than bitmaps), making it a mere 56KB and able to be rendered at any resolution.
The download site for Java SE 6u10 is obviously not up at this time due to the release delay. If you must have it now, the release candidate is still available, perhaps suggesting the problem delaying the official release isn't melting metal and faces. ®
But what about the write once run anywhere?
Fact of the matter is applets *should* ease deployment of business applications, the reality is they don't! Sage 1000 uses a large java applet to provide its main UI functionality. Think you can just hook up 50 users running IE and its all going to work? Nope no way, security issues, sitting doing nothing but restarting works, version issues, what a nightmare!
Re: No preload, but 'cache-warming'
>> "it uses 'cache-warming', by regularly requesting parts of the library files, so Windows keeps them in the filecache"
So, if the framework is being proactive by "regularly requesting parts of the library files" and having them stored in cache, pressumably before they are needed, wouldn't this be "pre-loading"? I don't imagine pre-loading being weighted by any connotations of storing the files permanently, does it?
I know it doesn't sound as cute and buzzworthy as "cache-warming". But then again, it's Java, so the act requires a new catchy name, of course.
Did someone say Internet Applet Revival
it never went away, I am there man wearing my iconic 1990 it will never fly, they will just use it to connect to IRC and that will be that, look of the era.
Or, and this is the biggee, let's redo all our navs in JavaApplets, and have them spin 360, cowabunga dude.
I say Java, just sucks it up, goes back to grassroots and makes the most rocking and rollin media center known to man - that was what it was designed for and that is what it should be doing. Ohhh if they could do that in an applet!