[kaffe] Kaffe Project Status
robilad at kaffe.org
Tue Nov 21 08:17:02 PST 2006
Charles L. Nelson wrote:
> The Apache Harmony website states that part of the Harmony development
> team consists of Kaffe developers and with Sun's possible introduction
> of its Java IP into the GPL, will Kaffe continue to be a relevant and
> supported project?
I believe the Kaffe developers in Harmony's team are Archie, and me.
I've largely contributed to Harmony to get the legal framework set up
and to get it off the ground, and have moved back to working on Kaffe since.
I believe that Archie is actively contributing in terms of JCHVM, but I
have to admit that I've not been following the progress at Harmony very
closely, since we don't share any code yet with it. It's a nice project,
and I think it has made great strides in the quality and scope of the
implementation in the past year.
I don't think Harmony has an influence on Kaffe's relevance, since it
targets a different audience (where using only code under the apache
license is an important constraint), while at Kaffe we have a more
licensing-agnostic project (as long as it's GPL-compatible, anything
goes, including the Apache license, once GPLv3 passes through the
drafting process next year).
i.e. the audience intrigued by opportunities offered by Harmony would
not have used Kaffe anyway for their projects.
Sun's JDK, otoh, will soon offer a full Java implementation under a
license suitable for inclusion into Kaffe, so I think it will be
interesting to try to merge in parts of Sun's implementation. Given that
Sun has a very good JVM implementation, I would expect the relevance of
Kaffe as a vehicle for support of programs written in the Java
programming language for distributions on the platforms supported by
Sun's implementations to decrease quickly, and I think that's a good
thing. It would allow Kaffe to be developped in a more experimental
My plan for the next release is to be able to run with a preinstalled
Classpath out of the box, and have some support for its generics branch.
I'd love to see Kaffe turn into a merging shop for the transition
towards Sun's class library implementation, and I'd love to see Kaffe's
internals like threading being implemented via GNU Pth, the zip code
being implemented via libzzip, using glib to do away with a lot of
portability code, and reusing components from other VMs like Cacao's
vmgen-generated interpreter, or the llvm-based jit from Tom Tromey's
gcj-jit branch in the gcc tree. How much of that will be done depends on
how much people are interested in hacking on something like it. As any
other project, it will live on based on how well it can attract future
contributions and develop strengths for new niches.
But as long as it's fun and useful to work on, it'll go on, no worries. :)
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