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2009-12-17

One server to rule them all

Ok so I had a rant today on another blog, I felt I wrote enough I should put it here in case I need to cut and paste it again next time I come across someone who is ignorant of Java servers and the benefits available for a script agnostic approach to server design.

Neil said: "Why on earth would you even consider using Railo et al to run your code, when it could never be as good as your language/platform specific setup you're using now."

1. From what I have read Quercus is faster than the standard PHP engine and can do several things like db obfuscation that the dll version doesn't do well. I've heard a lot about how slow Ruby is so I had assumed that jRuby may also be faster (I have since checked and yes jRudy claims to be faster and more powerful).

2. If I ran a hosting company and had the option to install languages separately with all their different admins or settings or all at once with a well thought out admin structure and a more powerful level of security sandboxing, I think it would be a no brainer if there were not a huge number of compatibility issues.

3. jRuby, Quercus and Rhino all have very active development teams already so that wouldn't change and other servers can integrate them without obscene amounts of effort. Quercus is already installed with Railo, you just have to manually add it in the Resin config file currently so adding a switch in the admin to do that would be simple I suspect.

CFgroovy2 makes it easy to switch between the languages already so given it is already done as a proof of concept I would not expect adding files to a class path via admin toggles to be a full time job, perhaps Sean could clarify?

You may have switched to Ruby, that's no doubt been great for you, like when I switched from ASP & PHP to ColdFusion. But for many Java developers who want fast scripting languages with the ability to use elements of Java they love then Java based versions of the scripting languages can be very advantageous especially when it comes to working with and using legacy code.

I think you are very wrong in being so dismissive of the idea just because in your perception it wont suite you, think outside your box, there's plenty of issues developers around the globe face and there is definitely positive movement for change and having options to get past them. .NET has JScript, VBScript, FSharp and CSharp because MS are smart enough to know that some jobs are done better by different languages.

JavaScript is the most important language for the web and is grow in popularity rapidly (more Java/JavaScript servers than any other language now I believe thanks to Rhino looking up SSJS on wikipedia), supporting Rhino is a no brainer, support for actionscript could also potentially be
added as it is based on JavaScript.

More options is always better who cares if there are some narrow minded users of a language that stubbornly refuse to investigate better options, Mono, Quercus, jRuby all show that there is a need for languages to be implemented in different ways for different needs. Bringing several of these into one place would draw in more communities of developers to one place which can only be a good thing as shown by Apache foundation itself!

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