Austin Kotlus is a devoted father, husband, water polo player and Packers fan. The majority of Austin's career has been spent as a contractor building Java-based solutions including automated assessments, emergency management, BPM, data warehousing, and enterprise search solutions. Currently, Austin is looking to get more involved in the Java community he has benefited from for so long. Austin has posted 1 posts at DZone. You can read more from them at their website. View Full User Profile

Pledging 350 Hours to Save Project Jigsaw for Java 8

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This blog post marks the beginning of my mission to save Project Jigsaw...

Why do I Care?

I believe that Project Jigsaw is single most important enhancement to both Java and the JVM since the initial release.  It will forever change how and where Java is developed and deployed.  Jigsaw has been touted as the next major step forward in start up time, performance, and a key to bringing Java SE to a broader range of platforms including smartphones, tablets, and the cloud.

What is the Problem?

When I learned that Jigsaw was once again being pushed back to the next release of Java (currently estimated to be available in 2015) I was disappointed.  I kept asking myself questions like...

  • Why has it taken so long?
  • What work is complete and what work is outstanding?
  • Is there a way to introduce Jigsaw in phases?
  • Will Jigsaw ever see the light of day?

At the same time, I realize that Jigsaw is an enormous undertaking that, if done wrong, could be the end of what was once the king of development platforms.

What Can I Do?

The day after, I started thinking a little differently.  Instead of being disappointed and questioning Oracle's commitment, I wondered if there was anything I can do.  I have benefited greatly from Java and the Open Source ecosystem and believe it is time to give back.  After all, Oracle shouldn't be alone in their quest to move Java forward.  Millions depend on Java and the JVM and will benefit greatly from Jigsaw.  I can help with development, but I know that won't be enough.

Oracle: What is enough?  Specifically, how many hours do you need from the community to make Jigsaw a reality for Java 8?  Is it already too late?  If not, what can the community help with? 

The Pledge

To get us started, I hereby pledge 350 hours of my time to help save Project Jigsaw (approximately 8hrs/week from now until May 2013).  This time can include development, organizing the community, posting to this blog to keep everyone up to date on our progress, etc. 

Developers, testers, and other interested parties, I can't do it alone.  If you want to pledge your time too, you have come to the right place...

Sign Up Now!
Published at DZone with permission of its author, Austin Kotlus. (source)

(Note: Opinions expressed in this article and its replies are the opinions of their respective authors and not those of DZone, Inc.)


Martijn Verburg replied on Thu, 2012/07/26 - 7:11am

Interesting :-) - Have you seen the Adopt OpenJDK effort? Drop us a line there.

Jonathan Fisher replied on Thu, 2012/07/26 - 9:39am

I'm not extremely handy with C++. Is there Java work to be done?

Sura Sos replied on Thu, 2012/07/26 - 10:29am

It is better to get it right the first time than to rush the product out.

Austin Kotlus replied on Thu, 2012/07/26 - 11:15am in response to: Martijn Verburg

Thank you for letting me know about the Adopt OpenJDK effort.  As we get organized and are ready to start contributing, this may be the best way to do so.

Austin Kotlus replied on Thu, 2012/07/26 - 11:23am in response to: Sura Sos

I couldn't agree more - the goal is not to rush, it is to offer my time and hopefully organize others (630 hours pledged thus far - thank you all!!!) to be able to make more progress and hopefully still release as part of Java 8.  I asked Oracle a few questions in the post that will help to understand if it is possible to accomplish this goal.  Without knowing what work remains, how that work is distributed, etc, I don't know what is realistic.  Hopefully the community will continue to volunteer hours and Oracle will embrace our effort.

Austin Kotlus replied on Thu, 2012/07/26 - 11:25am in response to: Jonathan Fisher

I believe there will be a lot of Java work to do.  If you are interested, I recommend you sign up and note in the comment what type of development you are best at.

Jonathan Fisher replied on Thu, 2012/07/26 - 2:14pm

Even if we can't get this in Java 8, I think getting this into a  "Java 8.1" would be acceptable. This feature was supppoesd to be in Java6, then Java7. It's fallen off the radar twice. I think this community effort will make sure it doesn't fall off the radar again.

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