Finally used Microsoft's JVM to run an app (a trivial Swing frame) yesterday. That's right, here it is 2003 and I'm finally getting around to using 1998 tech.

The upshot is that it worked well and seemed to work (in the five minutes I used it) fairly quickly. Getting a Swing app to work with it was really as simple as jview /cp .;swingall.jar trivialFrame.

I've seen tons of Java programmers on usenet and mailing lists talk about how they just *need* Java 1.4, but for the majority of most non-graphic apps you probably don't. Are there places where it's inconvienent to port your code from 1.4 to 1.1.4? Sure. Constructors change, convienence methods have been added, etc. Hashtables and Vectors need to be used in place of lists, etc. But these are generally easy things to change, and even easier to code right the first time if you're designing code to be easily ported from 1.1.4-1.4.1.

The upshot is that you can easily deploy a Java app, at least for another few months, on most any Windows box -- and with an extremely small download for your end user, if that's important. The VM's there already, Jack. And if you compartmentalize your app's logic well enough, you can easily provide 1.1.4 level functions to everyone in a tiny download that'll run on 99.44% of the PCs out there, Mac or Windows. And once you're there, that app can help handle their transition to 1.4.1 and the rest of your app's fancy functionality.

The MS JVM is a great foot in the door. Java programmers need to learn to use it.

Smoke break's over.