Georg Fuellen fuellen@dali.Mathematik.Uni-Bielefeld.DE
Thu, 14 Aug 1997 12:19:34 +0000 (GMT)

> I see that Sun is pushing Tcl as a glue language for Java
> and is in the process of developing a Tcl-Java interface:
> I'm thinking about how Perl would fit into this effort. For example, 
> would Perl interface with Java via a Perl-Tcl interface or would there 
> be a separate and potentially competing (and potentially redundant) 
> Perl-Java interface? Could the coupling of Tcl and Java lead to the 
> demise of Perl, as Java gains popularity? It would be hard to compete 

Demise of Perl ?? The Perl community is just too big for that :

* E.g. A ``Java-enhanced Perl compiler, written by Larry Wall'',
(``... the compiler is supposed to be able to compile a perl program into a 
.class file that will work on the JVM!  A pretty impressive trick.
I think more will be unveiled at the Perl conference.'' 
-- From: O'Reilly Book Support <>; search 
for ``java and perl together''.

* E.g. ``A Java Front End to Perl CGI'':
``At the National Human Genome Research Institute, we have written a
number of applications using a combined Java/Perl architecture. ''

* E.g. ``Perl Hosted on Java'':
``This talk features work that embeds perl into the Java Virtual Machine,
which then allows programmers to use perl parasitically using Java as the
unwitting 'host'''

* I'm sure there's more !

Nevertheless, if Sun pushes Tcl with all its market power,
Perl/Bioperl needs to be very attractive if it doesn't want to be confined
to a niche. It needs to offer a very good solution for much-needed tasks,
and be maximally compatible w/ the other tools ppl use -- no matter whether
we like them or not.
(This is just my personal opinion; do the others feel the same ?)
Most importantly, we need to offer stable+useful+reliable code by the
end of the year at the latest.

> against Perl for CGI scripting, but perhaps Tcl would provide a better 
> Java glue, given the work that Sun is doing.
> Here is a blurb from the above cupojoe page:
> "...Sun is dedicated to making Tcl the
>  Internet's preeminent scripting language by
>  providing access from Tcl to JavaBeans(tm)
>  and Java(tm) applications. That means that
>  Tcl will provide an easy method for rapidly
>  developing new Java applications. Tcl will
>  provide the "glue" to pull together one or more Java
>  components, in much the same way that
>  Visual Basic can be used to pull together
>  Visual Basic Extension (VBX) components
>  that are written in C or C++. Java will be
>  used for building new primitives while Tcl/Tk
>  will be used for hooking them together into
>  applications..."
> Other relevant links (currently accessible from the above page):
> Tcl-Java   :
> Tcl/Tk Home:
> Perl Versus:
> Cheers,
> SteveC