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By Darryl K. Taft  |  Posted 2002-11-22 Print this article Print

: Father of Java Sounds Off"> C and C++ enable developers to exploit system weaknesses, he said. "You can get around any interface that is intrinsic in C and C++." However, "in Java I took the position that the integrity of interfaces had to be respected," Gosling said. "And that translated to be a big deal in security and reliability." Gosling said Microsoft has three main things going for it: "easy-to-use tools, an unbelievable marketing budget and a desktop monopoly to exploit."
Gosling knocked todays development tools. Although he said a lot of ease-of-use in the development arena is around tools, "tools is kind of a broad market because the price points have been driven to where its very difficult to drive a profit."
Yet Gosling said very few tools actually help really adept programmers develop software. "If you look behind the back of a developer at work, youll probably notice hes not using some fancy new tool or IDE [integrated development environment], but a text editor," he said. And often that text editor is Emacs, the Unix version of which Gosling created some 20 years ago. He said he is amazed that Emacs has not evolved very much in all these years. Following his stint with the press, Gosling delivered his keynote on "The Future of Open, End-to-End Software Systems, where he highlighted a few of his favorite Java systems. One was for the Brazilian National Health system, which Gosling said contained "a big pile of Enterprise JavaBeans." He said the system runs on five national server farms that look at 12 million people in 44 cities, he said. The Brazilian National Healthcare system has about 10 million lines of code, Gosling said, and the organization plans to turn its software over to the open-source movement. "Its like 10 million lines of code," he said. "I dont know what SourceForge would do with this," he quipped. is an open-source software repository maintained by VA Software Inc. (Editors Note: This story has been updated since its original posting to clarify Goslings role in creating Emacs.)

Darryl K. Taft covers the development tools and developer-related issues beat from his office in Baltimore. He has more than 10 years of experience in the business and is always looking for the next scoop. Taft is a member of the Association for Computing Machinery (ACM) and was named 'one of the most active middleware reporters in the world' by The Middleware Co. He also has his own card in the 'Who's Who in Enterprise Java' deck.

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