James Gosling Unloads on Users of Java 1.4.2

James Gosling Unloads on Users of Java 1.4.2

date:May 11, 2011

For some, old habits die hard. For others, old versions of the Java platform die hard.

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Will You Please Stop Using 1.4.2...

And while Java 7 is the talk of the town, the sad fact is that a good number of Java professionals are still compiling against and deploying their applications to a 1.4.2 JDK. Richard Mayhew's recent polling of 500 developers, whose survey results were published at TheServerSide.com, showed that 5% of respondents were using 1.4.2 on their development machine at work, and 8% were targeting a 1.4.2 JDK for deployment. And while these aren't catastrophic numbers, they are enough to cause consternation.

"It always depressed me just how many people were stuck running 1.4.2.  [Java] 1.4.2 has been the bane of my existence for years."

-James Gosling,    
"The father of Java"
TSS JS 2011       

 

What should 1.4.2 users do?

So, what should you do if you are using 1.4.2? "Get with the program. Upgrade!" Says Gosling. "If I could have I would have pushed an update out that would have caused it to just die. But so many people would just not let go of 1.4.2."

A simple solution

Indeed, the simplest solution is to just upgrade the darn thing to at least version five. And if you're really adventurous, jump right ahead to version 7. With seven installed, you should be good to go another ten years or so without upgrading it again.


Read the full transcript from this video below:  

James Gosling Unloads on Users of Java 1.4.2

James Gosling: The enterprise world tends to be pretty slow at adopting
stuff, just because it's a world that has sort of a lot of overhead. It's just a
lot of work to put together systems, and it always depressed me just how
many people were stuck running JDK 1.4.2. 1.4.2 has been the bane of my
existence for years. If I could have, we would have pushed an update out
that would cause it to just die. But so many people would just not let go
of 1.4.2.

I can't tell you how many times people had come up to me and said, "Oh,
we've got this bug. We can't figure out how to deal with this bug." I go,
"You're using 1.4.2. Get with the program, upgrade." "Oh, we can't. Can't
you fix this bug in 1.4.2?" "But then it wouldn't be 1.4.2." It's this
script that I'm so glad to not be there anymore.

The life of Java Enterprise Edition has been pretty amazing to watch,
because it started out as a bunch of folks trying to come up with common
frameworks to do things that were extremely hard, that were very large
scale. So they were trying to make the really hard stuff possible, and they
didn't really worry about making stuff easy, because they were just worried
about making it possible.

So, all the early versions of Java EE tended to be kind of hard to use and
then, the EE community got this whole religion about it can actually be
easy.


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Richard Mayhew's Java Version Survey Results

James Gosling's Blog

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