[ImageJ-devel] moving to Java 7

Tobias Pietzsch pietzsch at mpi-cbg.de
Fri Dec 5 07:54:27 CST 2014

Hi all,

what is everyones opinion on moving the IJ2/Fiji stack to a new version of Java, i.e., Java 7.
Java 7 has been around for more than 3 years now. The end-of-life final public release of Java 6 was more than 1.5 years ago.

Benefits I see are the following:

* We could use the “new" Java 7 libraries. For example the Fork/Join framework would come handy in defining multi-threading interfaces in scijava-common (to be used in imagej-ops for example). Or the NIO2 stuff (java.nio.file)

* We would benefit from improvements of type inference for generics in the compiler. No more jumping through hoops to fix “errors” in code that should compile with Java 6 but doesn’t. (Plus we could use the diamond operator to shorten generics instantiations.)

* We could use third-party libraries that only support Java 7. For example I’m using Jetty in a project that can therefore not be part of Fiji currently. (This mail was more or less triggered by me looking into http://ojalgo.org who maybe went a bit over the top and already abandoned Java 7 for Java 8). I think it is only a matter of time until we will have a problem with third-party libraries that we already use abandoning Java 6.

I do not have a clear picture of what the downsides would be. Johannes always said that people on old macs are tied to an old java version and that we do not want to leave those users behind. It would be interesting to know how many people that actually would impact.

What do you think?

best regards,
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