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Under the Covers

by Daniel H. Steinberg
ONJava Newsletter for 12/11/2003

Friends,

This week all three articles look underneath the covers:

Most of the time you don't have to worry about tweaking the settings for data binding, ponder the ins and outs of security, or worry about how backwards compatibility will be maintained in the new generics implementation. To begin with, the idea behind JAXB is straightforward. An XML schema is a template for an XML document in the same way that a Java class is a template for a Java object. JAXB takes an XML schema and produces a corresponding Java class hierarchy. There are times, however, when you will want to tweak these resulting Java class files. Sayed Hashimi shows you when and how in this week's Understanding JAXB Java Binding Customization.

Denis Piliptchouk continues his look at Java vs. .NET Security. In this second article he looks at cryptography and communication and concludes, "Both platforms come out pretty even in terms of cryptographic features, although Java has a more complicated solution due to the obsolete U.S. export restrictions. The picture becomes muddier when it comes to communication protection--while Java fares much better by providing a choice of both platform- and application-level solutions, it clearly lags behind .NET when it comes to support for Web service security. Here, Java developers would have to turn to independent vendors for the desired features."

This week's java.net feature is the debut of William Grosso's column Explorations. He writes about two of the "code transformations the compiler performs in order to implement the generics specification". Erasure consists of "two distinct tasks. First, it does type checking at compile time using all the type information it has (including the type parameters). Then it transforms the code, using a set of rules that remove all of the type parameters (e.g., all of the parameterized types are mapped to raw types), and inserts a set of casting operations. Bridging is another technique required for backwards compatibility."

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Till next week,

Daniel H Steinberg, editor
ONJava.com and java.net
daniel@oreilly.com

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