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is client-side Java universal?  RSS feed

 
Chris Crawford
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I'm sure that this question has been answered many times here and on the web in general, but I have tried a bunch of different search phrases and can't seem to find a phrase that gets me close to an answer. My question is simple: can I assume that the great majority of users can run Java on the client side? My searches have produced just about every answer imaginable; it seems that this is more a matter of opinion than fact. There are a great many discussions along the lines of "Java is dead! Long live [insert language of choice]!" There's general agreement that server-side Java has a solid future, but on the client side, while I read a lot of dark opinions, I can't seem to find an objective, fact-based answer.

To put it more directly, I'm just getting started on adapting a big hunk of software for web use. It's entirely in Java, and most of it is server-side, so my core work is straightforward enough. But on the client side, several people have urged me to rewrite everything in JavaScript. I know enough about JavaScript to realize that this will require a from-the-ground-up recoding. I suppose my question is a kind of "look before you leap" question.

Any help would be much appreciated.
 
Bear Bibeault
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Chris Crawford wrote:can I assume that the great majority of users can run Java on the client side?

You may assume the exact opposite. Applets were never popular, and more recently, because of its poor security reputation, most people will have client-side Java disabled. There is no future for client-side Java.
 
Bear Bibeault
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More:

If you want to future-proof your career, go the JavaScript route.

If you want to just get-it-done, you might want to explore something like GWT that "compiles" Java to client-side technologies. There'd likely still be a lot of retro-fitting, but you may be able to leverage some of the Java code.

Personally, I would never in a million years go the GWT route; but different strokes...
 
Chris Crawford
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Thanks; I'll take that as a definitive answer, coming from a true-blue Java expert. I could never be certain that other opinions were truly independent of language prejudice.
 
Charles Sexton
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moved this reply to a new topic in the java in general tab.....
 
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