SPUG: Java, Perl, large-scale projects
wyllie at newsof.com
Fri Jun 14 12:40:06 CDT 2002
When I worked at Cobalt 1999 (I'm starting to think everyone who
programs in perl in Seattle has done a stint there), they were
pushing for Java. At that time they had a huge code base of perl
cgi scripts (no mod_perl - except for some of the work I was doing
at the time), and no real development processes - like no CVS. So
the hired a VP Development (formerly at IBM) and things started to
change ( MySQL to Oracle, Continuus source and process control
software, some time trcking system, etc.). The new VP also hired
an old buddy of his in Austin Texas, and they set up a new dev shop
down there of Java programers. So I think the push to Java was
more due to the changes in management than anything to do with the
code (and the existing CEOs proably just thought that the perl thing
was a big mess and a swtch to Java would be a good thing). If they
had the right people setting up their environment from the start, I'm
pretty sure the perl solution would have worked really well for them.
After leaving Cobalt (and seeing how not to do it), I helped form
a new company wich has a fairly large perl code base ( ~60,000
lines) which runs in mod_perl and is doing really well. We looked
at Java briefly (and corba) and used some of their concepts in our
perl environment - we decided it was going to be easier to stick
with our perl code than to start build a whole new framework in
Java. Going to see Damian Conway a few years ago at the Perl
University really gave me a lot of confidence that we were doing
the right things.
On Fri, 14 Jun 2002, Creede Lambard wrote:
> On Thu, 13 Jun 2002, Eric Johanson wrote:
> > My 2c,
> > When I worked at cobalt in Jan 2000, there was a 'big push for java'. The
> > basis I was told was that it leaks to much for modperl, and they are
> > spending a fortune in hardware. The performance of the code was terrible.
> > The 'patch' at the time was to have the perl output as much static data as
> > possible - - that helped, but it was still a problem for all of the
> > dynamic content. I'm shocked that they haven't rolled java out yet - it
> > has been over 2 years of development time (I recall estimates of _a few
> > months_ to port it - - I guess that didn't happen).
> > I hope that Creede can give us an update. I would think that something is
> > up in java at this point.
> > http://dealernet.com/ - still using .cgi
> > http://www.toyotadealer.com/seattle/ - still using .cgi
> > Please don't read the wrong thing into this post; Cobalt was a fun place
> > to work, and there had been some great people to work with.
> > -Eric
> The vast majority of the sites are still using perl. I don't know about the
> other groups, but Chrysler isn't doing mod_perl, we're doing straight
> template-based CGI. Otherwise it WOULD be impossible to maintain everything.
> As it is we have master scripts that generate the websites in general, then
> we can make changes to specific websites as necessary.
> As for the Java side, the way they've explained it to us is that Nitra (the
> Java initiative) is an architecture that we, or the dealers, can plug
> applications into and out of. So we can write applications that run on Nitra,
> but (for instance) if a dealer group has a custom finance calculator they
> want to deploy on their dealer web sites, they can write it to Nitra
> specifications and plug it right in. The problem with the two-year rollout is
> that doing something like this is harder than it sounds, and it sounds pretty
> At any rate the idea is that eventually everything at Cobalt is going to be
> moved over to Nitra, including data feeds, log parsing and other back-end
> stuff. Personally I think it would make more sense to use Java on the
> application and presentation layers and Perl for the network layer, if you
> will. But, no one asked me.
> * .~. `( --------------------------------------------------------------
> ` / V \ . Creede Lambard : When in danger, when in doubt,
> /( )\ creede at penguinsinthenight.com : run in circles, scream & shout
> ^^-^^ --------------------------------------------------------------
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