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If Java Is Dying, It Sure Looks Awfully Healthy

Hugh Pickens DOT Com (2995471) writes | about a year ago

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Hugh Pickens DOT Com (2995471) writes "Andrew Binstock writes at Dr. Dobb's that a recurring prejudice in the forums where the cool kids hang out is against Java, often described as verbose and fading in popularity but Binstock sees little supporting evidence of Java being in some kind of long-term decline. While it is true that Java certainly can be verbose, several scripting languages have sprung up which are purpose-designed to spare developers from long syntactical passages to communicate a simple action including NetRexx, Groovy, and Scala. As far as Java's popularity goes, normally, when technologies start their ultimate decline, tradeshows are the first to reflect the disintegrating community. But the recent JavaOne show was clearly larger and better attended than it has been in either of the last two years and vendors on the exhibiting floor were unanimous in saying that traffic, leads, and inquiries were up significantly over last year. Technically, the language continues to advance says Binstock. Java 8, expected in March, will add closures (that is, lambda expressions) that will reduce code, diminish the need for anonymous inner classes, and facilitate functional-like coding. Greater modularity which will be complete in Java 9 (due in 2016) will help efficient management of artifacts, as will several enhancements that simplify syntax in that release. "When you add in the Android ecosystem, whose native development language is Java, it becomes very difficult to see how a language so widely used in so many areas — server, Web, desktop, mobile devices — is in some kind of decline," concludes Binstock. "What I'm seeing is a language that is under constant refinement and development, with a large and very active community, which enjoys a platform that is widely used for new languages. None of this looks to me like a language in decline.""

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