Thursday, December 04, 2008

Fun experiences with JavaFX.

UPDATE: Yes, I updated to Java 6 Update 10 after #1.

Had a peek at some JavaFX demos earlier -- have been evaluating XUL, Flash, and Silverlight lately, looking for a good, free, easy to target platform for enriching some sites. You know, giving them some *umph*. You know, a richer experience for those who can afford it (someone cue rimshot!).

Here's how JavaFX played out:

  1. Crashed the browser when I visited a JavaFX applet running an older version of Java (1.6 update 7). The *WHOLE* browser. All of it. Thanks, Sun.
  2. Viewing the demos on, they all repeatedly bitched about needing to use an "older" version of Java. Hit cancel, dialog pops up again -- FOREVER.
  3. Jarring, incredibly annoying browser-wide freeze for about 6 seconds while Java sloughed itself into memory.
So far, typical Java.

After I got the JavaFX demos up-and-running, they looked OK, but the demos aren't really reassuring.

XUL's a good'un, but that's only for Firefox browsers. However, for an intranet setting, XUL would win out completely. Some Firefox plugins are freaking *awesome* -- and they're all pure XUL + Javascript.

The whole javascript + svg + css + etc combo is in theory great but in reality minor browser differences are a big 'go fuck yourself.'

Silverlight actually looks really good in the respect that it can be driven by JS and written with plain XML, but it's a downer, same as XUL, for people not running Windows and IE7. Yeah, they say there's Mac and Firefox support, but I haven't found a good sample that works aside from Netflix's Instant Viewing (that only ran in Firefox, by the way).

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