Wiki and Java 1.4

I'm up late again, as always, working on one of my many many personal projects. We decided to get rid of my Really Simple Markup Language at Instead we're going with a simplified set of HTML tags. This is very non-wiki, since you're supposed to be able to do WikiWord links and have a small subset of weird marks (''__anyone__''?) that will do all your formatting for you. But everyone knows HTML now, or at least it seems like it. So there's no reason not to go with that. Like someone one said on the mailing list - we have enough crap to learn every day without messing around with Yet Another Markeup Language. Amen to that. So I'm changing the code now... messing with regex, debugging, etc.

To make editing the wiki more accessible to those non-geeks that might use it, I'm writing a Java HTML Editor Applet based on the newer classes in the JDK (you'll have to have the latest libraries to use it - not rely on MS's wacky 1.1 version). This will be really cool to have both on the wiki and in the Journal.

And this brings me to Java 1.4. They have it running on my hosting server and I installed it last week to play with Amazon's SOAP demo. So now the question is do I USE it? There's some really nice things in there that I've wanted for a while: String.replaceAll(String, String) for example! That's a wonderful addition and about time too.

But JDK 1.4 has broken a bunch of apps out there and it makes me generally afraid of it... it's too new. People don't have it yet and it's flaky. If you go to Jakarta's Gump project you can see quite a few apps that don't work any more because the guys at Sun messed with a lot of things. Including the completely fucking useless 'assert' command. What bozos. You can't even use assert without a command line switch and it's a complete geek-toy thing. Life is fine without assert. I can pretty much guarentee that I will never write a line of code that relies on an assert condition. Why include something as essoteric as this and break cool apps like HSQLDB? It doesn't make sense at all... someone at Sun is asleep at the switch.

But still, the geek in me can't resist using the latest and greatest so that's what I'm doing. I swore at Amazon for requiring 1.4... I almost didn't install the code and play with it because of it, but I figured I had to sometime. It's still weird though. Nice additional libraries and Swing seems faster too (or is that marketing induced hypnosis? I'll never know...)

okay, back to work and then to bed.


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