There are lots of interesting news items coming out of JavaOne at the moment, but putting things together to make out the bigger picture can be difficult. There is no better way to bury a news story than in a blizzard of other news stories.
Hardly revealed but at least made clear on Amy Fowler's blog is the fact that Swing is:
“still there and it isn’t going anywhere”
The Swing library isn't going to get much attention in the coming months and the star of the UI show is going to be JavaFX. The reason is that JavaFX is hardware accelerated, 3D and all round more sophisticated when it comes to graphics. It is also the Java alternative to Silverlight and Flash, because as well as running on the desktop it also works in the browser. Put simply if you develop for JavaFX you can run anywhere - well not quite.
Another strange piece of news from JavaOne is that while JavaFX 2.0 should be available in the third quarter of 2011, the mobile version has been been placed on hold. No further explanations have been forthcoming. Without a mobile platform capability JavaFX looks suddenly less attractive. The good news is that JavaFX is going to get a full Java API, which means you will be able to dispense with JavaFX Script, something that will please some and annoy others. My guess is that if there is enough fuss JavaFX Script will be resurrected.The full Java API also opens up the possibility of using the UI from other JVM languages such as JRuby.
So what are Oracle's plans for the mobile arena given the downplaying of JavaFX? The surprising answer is Java ME. Just when you thought Java ME wasn't worth thinking about, Oracle promises a full upgrade to support hardware accelerated graphics - DirectX or OpenGL depending on the platform. While there are lots of neglected Java ME platforms out there you can't help but speculate whether Java ME could be a replacement for Android shold Oracle actually win its legal case against Google.
- Swing - not dead but in suspended animation
- JavaFX - to take over the world as long as it isn't a mobile phone
- Java ME to take over the world as long as it is a mobile phone
Oracle boss Larry Ellison to deliver keynote at JavaOne
Oracle sues Google for Android Java use
Java helps aliens
Part Two of the Kar-Rek Saga
The dark side of Java
LadyJava music video
Java Man Quits Sun