Java port and interfaces

Mug '97 - New projects - previous - next


This project has several goals:


We are only in the design stage so far. A proof-of-principle merlin interface was written (javalin) which showed both Java's strengths (interface flexibility and speed) and weaknesses (instability, limits either communications or security). The upcoming 1.2 release appears to provide features which will meet our requirements and we will be moving ahead with this project.



Java is really cool. There are two main forces driving us to embrace Java, neither are because it's cool: (1) many people doing chemical informatics would like to use the toolkit in Java applets and (2) we need to reduce the per-user bandwidth for our web-based (DCGI) information delivery system.

As a company keenly interested in stable, long-term solutions for chemical information processing and delivery, we aren't the biggest fans of Java as it exists so far. We have had some success with Java prototype applets: it's not all that hard to get applets to work once. In the long term we need something as robust as C and Fortran toolkit programs: the criteria is that programs written today should still be working 10 years hence. That being said, there is a near-certainty that Java is going to settle down and that most of the outstanding problems will be resolved within a year or so.

Here is the approach that we're taking:

Daylight Chemical Information Systems, Inc.