You know it wasn’t always like that with Java. Back in the day things
very simple and great to use. I know since I was one of the first
write a web application in Java. I actually used CGI before servlets
out, then switched to servlets since they were better.
It just started happening that vendors would create these JCP
and create standards that helped them sell their products. I remember
getting really pissed off when I worked on the uPortal project and
that a recent version of the Servlet API removed almost all management
interfaces. You can still access deprecated APIs in servlets but the
vendors removed these management interfaces with a vengeance. I think
was the first example of the so called “community process” being used to
advantage of the vendors.
Some people I mention this to have said it has no “reality” to it, but
a look at the current state of things.
I have an IBM product at work called INS. We were pretty much forced to
it. This thing requires a ton of IBM software to run. It uses WEA,
WebSphere, WebSphere Portal, maybe 10 Lotus products we have no clue
and then finally INS. It’s got to be like a cool million in software
hardware to run this thing. When you call to get help for it they have
read an org chart to tell you who to call next (since nobody at IBM can
actually just solve your problem).
We had problems installing the 5.x release and IBM had to send out a
INS developer from England and several of their WebSphere gurus and
couldn’t install the thing according to the documentation. It finally
them about a week to get it installed cleanly. It also requires Windows
because of a bunch of features we don’t even use. When we run the
application it has to keep a cmd window open on the desktop and we can’t
the administrator out. Now that’s enterprise!
What does it do?
It reads RSS feeds and sends e-mail notifications.
I’m not kidding or exaggerating here. That’s all it does. They claim
does more but when you ask for these other features IBM says, “Oh, you
to write a connector for that.” It took our developers almost 1 month
just use the RSS connector it already has. Writing a new connector
almost another 3 months.
One of our team members had a great quote about INS, “It’s like you’re
buying the elephant to watch it’s tail wag.”
The best part of this story? We asked if just the INS part ran on Linux
without all the other crap. IBM told us it didn’t and that we had to
the whole package. I later found out that IBM actually did sell just
another company in EU that wasn’t bundled and ran on Linux just fine.
just used INS as a means of selling a ton of crap we didn’t need.
This is why there’s a backlash against Java. I don’t think it’s the
language as much as how vendors took Java’s popularity and started
everything they possibly can or setting up the “standards” so their
are in a prime position to take the market. This disregard for the end
implementers and using the JCP to sell their stuff just eventually set
stage for something simpler to come along and take them on.
Anyway, that’s my thoughts on it. Talk amongst yourselves.
Zed A. Shaw