+1 from me on a new poll for discussion.

On Thu, Jun 5, 2008 at 11:56 AM, Jeremias Maerki <[EMAIL PROTECTED]> wrote:
> +1 to being cautious about dropping support for Java 1.4 without
> consulting the user base first, i.e. +1 for another user poll, though I
> wouldn't do it before October.
> +1 to putting the users' desires above the developers' desires.
> +1 to moving to Java 1.5 when the time is right.
> -0.5 (no veto) to moving to Java 1.5 before Oct 2008.
> +1 to making experiments with Retroweaver (but please not in Trunk).
> On 05.06.2008 17:46:07 Vincent Hennebert wrote:
>> Hi Guys,
>> I would like to raise this topic again: what about switching to Java 1.5
>> as a minimum requirement?
>> The End of Life transition period for Java 1.4 will end on the 30th of
>> October 2008 [1]. The next version of FOP (after 0.95) will probably not
>> have been released by this time, so we could start using 1.5 features in
>> the Trunk.
>> [1] http://java.sun.com/j2se/1.4.2/download.html
>> I don't particularly expect any disagreement from a developer point of
>> vue (who doesn't want to use 1.5 features?), so in the end this will
>> probably depend on the users' reactions, but I thought I'd ask for
>> opinions here first.
>> According to the poll Jeremias made in October 2007 [2], only 14.3% of
>> the users would think it's a bad idea to switch to 1.5. A year later the
>> percentage will probably have further decreased.
>> [2] http://wiki.apache.org/xmlgraphics/UserPollOct2007
>> I guess a new poll will still be necessary. Or we could base it on lazy
>> consensus: "If you still want Java 1.4 compatibility, speak up now!".
>> Anyway, even if 1.4 compatibility is still considered to be required,
>> there are tools to convert 1.5 code into 1.4 compatible one. I'm mainly
>> thinking of Retroweaver:
>> http://retroweaver.sourceforge.net/
>> It's BSD licensed, so IIC there wouldn't be any problem to distribute it
>> with FOP. Obviously it would be an (optional) compile-time dependency
>> only. I haven't personally tested it, but I'm told it's working pretty
>> well and it seems to be well maintained. Of course I'd volunteer to
>> introduce it into the build system and see how it works. FWIW, it's
>> based on the ASM library, that I've had the opportunity to play with
>> a few years ago, and what I can say is that it's a really nice, strong,
>> lightweight, easy to use library for manipulating class files.
>> http://asm.objectweb.org/
>> Obviously we wouldn't switch everything to 1.5 immediately. We would do
>> it progressively, when fixing bugs or implementing new features. So it
>> should be easy to check that the conversion is working properly by
>> running the testsuite on a 1.4 jvm, before every commit. Also, we could
>> restrain ourselves to features that are directly translatable to 1.4:
>> generics, enhanced for loop, autoboxing/unboxing. Most of all we could
>> stick to using methods from the Java standard library that are also
>> available in the 1.4 version (and, for instance, not use the new
>> concurrency package for now).
>> Just having the possibility to use generics would give us tremendous
>> benefits: simpler, cleaner, safer code, more easily understandable, more
>> easily maintainable, etc. I can't wait anymore to use those features.
>> So, WDYT?
>> Thanks,
>> Vincent
>> --
>> Vincent Hennebert                            Anyware Technologies
>> http://people.apache.org/~vhennebert         http://www.anyware-tech.com
>> Apache FOP Committer                         FOP Development/Consulting
> Jeremias Maerki


The Web Maestro
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