The Trouble with JXTA
Subject:   Re: alternates to heavy XML-based protocol approaches / reality check
Date:   2001-05-09 09:29:40
From:   juantay
"again, xml is not a standard, nor a protocol. it is merely a standard way of specifying standards. since apps built on top of jxta will not have to deal with xml directly and will be leveraging the jxta api, the choice of xml is merely convenience for the jxta development team allowing them to take an off the shelf parser and use that to process messages.

sun is wrong. you don't make a protocol succesful by pushing it forward as a protocol. who cares about a protocol? not even the academics, beyond a certain point. what people care about is an application of the protocol (or any core technology for that matter) that can ONLY be accomplished reasonably well with this new protocol. i.e. a killer application. there is no killer app for jxta such that one couldn't do the exact same thing with a home-brew p2p protocol.

let's not fool ourselves. this is no great technological revolution, and it is not even a very interesting evolution. i am not microsoft lover, but the way they are approaching their messaging platform is much more mature. they want it to be adopted first, through massive dissemination of msn messenger and then hailstorm, finally tying all these "killer" apps which are widely adopted with a unified, underlying messaging platform. first come out with a cool application, then talk about the platform. this is not networks 301. this is th real world."

ceterus paribus

I think We're all way off in this including Adam. Rereading I see that JXTA is merely a set of concepts. The implementation is not the same as JXTA.


1) Piping from one peer to another.

2) The Grouping concept. (What the word 'Peer' means!)

3) Monitoring and metering.

4) A security layer.

Other than that:

"The rapidly-growing set of distributed applications and services suggest a model that complements the client-server model while emphasizing direct communication between Internet users, not mainly from users at the Internet’s edge to servers located at its core. Rather than clients and servers having a vertical relationship, both can exist as equal peers on the network — despite different performance characteristics."
- Project JXTA: An Open, Innovative Collaboration

I can't see Not using XML in a world of web services even if I don't completely understand it.

"In theory, JXTA can be independent of any format used to encode advertisement documents and messages. In prac-tice, it uses XML as the encoding format, mainly for its convenience in parsing and for its extensibility."
Project JXTA: A Technology Overview

speed isn't everything.

"JXTA is defined as a set protocols, which use XML-encoded messages. As such, it stays away from APIs and remains independent of programming languages, so that it can be implemented in C/C++, Java, Perl, or other languages. This
means heterogeneous devices with completely different software stacks can interoperate through JXTA protocols."
Project JXTA: A Technology Overview

No api's.

"JXTA technology is designed to be also independent of transport protocols. It can be implemented on top of TCP/IP, HTTP, Bluetooth, HomePNA, and many other protocols. This means that a system built on top of JXTA functions in
the same fashion when the system is expanded to a new networking environment or to a new class of devices, as long as there is a correct transport protocol handler for the new networking protocol."
Project JXTA: A Technology Overview

Totally radical.

"And with small, simple building blocks that are easy to build upon, JXTA technology frees developers from having to invent their own framework — enabling them to focus on building new, innovative, distributed computing applications."
- Project JXTA: An Open, Innovative Collaboration

Just like Java.


I also don't think it fair to say that this came from Sun, that Sun is just laying down standards. They are laying down concepts however. This is Bill Joy's child. It came from his mind and who else would know about the coming interoperability with everything else? Concepts that he's been thinking about for years and years and worked on for about a year I think in his Aspen Group. So, he's just basically giving us the concepts and a probable road of standards is pushed to fit in with everything else.

You and Adam are correct. There IS hardly anything to JXTA and that's the great thing about it.

Juan Taylor