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Re: Should Automake still support Java?

From: Russ Allbery
Subject: Re: Should Automake still support Java?
Date: Mon, 30 Oct 2017 19:42:51 -0700
User-agent: Gnus/5.13 (Gnus v5.13) Emacs/25.2 (gnu/linux)

Bob Friesenhahn <address@hidden> writes:

> I do not see the point in supporting compiled Java in Automake.  The
> whole point of Java was that it can run in a VM.  GNU support for
> compiled Java seems to have faltered.  Although much useful work was
> done, people just did not start using compiled Java.  The free software
> world seems to have adopted OpenJDK
> (, and
> this is not even likely supported by Automake.

My feeling matches here, with the addition that the Java world has its own
build systems that are extremely popular and widespread, and Automake
seems to have never caught on.  People with Java projects use Maven
(mostly) or a few other things like ANT to build their projects.  People
who have mixed projects with some C and some Java are more likely to hook
Maven into the build system and delegate the Java build to Maven.

Those build systems are actively developed and kept up to date with
changes in Java, and that's a substantial amount of work.  I think it's
unlikely that Automake's support will be able to keep pace.

I would consider the situation with Java to be very similar to the
situation with Perl, Python, Node, or Ruby: languages that have their own
supported build systems deeply integrated into their ecosystem, where the
best solution for Automake projects is generally to find a way to hook
into that build system and delegate the build steps to the native build
system for that language.

Russ Allbery (address@hidden)              <>

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