Putting JavaFX in Perspective

Now that JavaOne 2007 has come and gone, we’ve time to reflect and digest the wealth of information condensed into one week. The main announcement that grabbed everyone’s attention was JavaFX, the new addition to the Java platform to ease and simplify development of compelling user interfaces for users (meaning not ‘developers’).

During the week there were numerous comparisons to Flash and Microsoft’s Silverlight, a browser plugin to enable creation and delivery of .NET based rich internet applications, however this blog post puts JavaFX into perspective. Without the equivalent of Macromedia’s Flash Professional currently there is no time based UI and animation creation tool for JavaFX. Editing and syntax highlighting support was mentioned as an add-on for Netbeans, this is no competitor to Flash Professional’s content creation support. Also, without further details it is assumed that to run JavaFX you will need a Java Runtime Environment on your machine – this is a significant download compared to the lightweight Flash Player plugin for most browsers.

JavaFX holds a lot of promise, but there is definitely room for the concept to grow if it is to complete in the same area as Flash.

XBox360 100% CPU + 100%GPU = ‘Ring of Death’ : Why Folding@Home will not be released for the 360

The Folding@Home project has benefited immensely from the addition of the online network of user’s PS3’s running the Folding@Home client – 124,758 PS3s has added 555 TeraFLOPS of processing power, compared to the 187 TeraFLOPS contributed by 1,697,764 PCs running the client on Windows. This clearly shows the raw processing power that the PS3 is capable of in comparison with your typical home PC.

So where is the XBox360 and it’s contribution to science? Well, according to this article which describes a critical flaw in the design of the XBox360, if the 360 runs at 100% CPU and 100% GPU for a sustained period of time, the amount of heat generated warps the motherboard inside the case (which apparently is part of the design of the system) to such extent that the solder holding the chips to the board will fail… leading to the infamous 360 ‘Ring of Death’ (2 red quadrants indicates the machine is overheating, 3 red quadrants indicates the hardware has completed failed).

So if this is to be believed, don’t expect to see a Folding@Home client running on the 360 anytime soon, not unless it is handicapped to run at anything less than 100%, since doing so will do nothing but accelerate and increase the failure rate of the 360, which according to current (disgruntled) owners is in excess of 10%.

Building the OpenJDK with Netbeans

Sun annouced the completion of their initiative to Open Source Java this week at JavaOne – the majority of the JDK is now available as open source and you can download and build the javac compiler and the JDK APIs.

If you are looking to get stuck in with the source, head over to their project website. For instructions on how to build the source with Netbeans, take a look at this article on the Netbeans blog.