[TriLUG] Fw: Linux App Writer Wows Skeptics
alfjon at mindspring.com
Wed Apr 3 03:20:00 EST 2002
Thought the Tri-Lug group might be interested in this message which was sent
to me by a friend. His email address has been removed out of courtesy to
him. ---AL Johnson.
----- Original Message -----
To: al johnson <alfjon at mindspring.com>
Sent: Tuesday, April 02, 2002 4:45 PM
Subject: Linux App Writer Wows Skeptics
Linux App Writer Wows Skeptics
By Michelle Delio
Print this • E-mail it • Set E-mail Alerts
8:45 a.m. April 2, 2002 PST
Anyone who can put up a simple website can now also code complex Linux
On Tuesday, IBM released the source code for SashXB , a scripting
language that allows people with basic programming skills to create
Linux applications by working with simple website-style code such as
• IBM Is Putting on the (Linux) Tux
• Breakthrough for Penguin-Heads
• The Grid Draws Its Battle Lines
• Linux Coders Offer Kernel Wishes
• News from the Linux front
But SashXB is more than just a way to simplify Linux development.
Programmers of all skill levels can use SashXB to create "weblications,"
Linux applications that "live" on the desktop just like a traditional
application, but can be updated as easily as a Web page.
When a user's computer is connected to the Internet, weblications'
content and functions can be updated with data sent through the
application's home server. When disconnected from the Net, weblications
can use stored or local data to function.
Some experienced Linux developers say they weren't impressed with the
idea of SashXB at first, thinking that working with relatively simple
projects. But the majority of those who finally used SashXB are excited
by its promise.
"When I first heard about Sash I wasn't interested because I already
know how to code," said Jerome Denman, a systems administrator for a
Wall Street investment firm. "But when I tried it, I found that it let
me do things with Linux that I couldn't do before: create programs that
act just like Web pages. I plan to use it to put real-time stock tickers
and newsfeeds onto our associates' desktops."
A.J. Shankar, an IBM software engineer who worked on the SashXB project
as an intern, also confessed to having some initial doubts about SashXB.
"Initially, I didn't know what to expect from the project because I was
Shankar said. "Then when I saw some demos, I gained a serious
appreciation for the real viability of SashXB.
"And even though I've added considerably to my coding skills since
working at IBM, I often find myself writing programs with SashXB,"
Shankar added. "It's kind of like the Hair Club for Men. 'I'm not only a
developer, I'm a user, too!'"
One possible drawback to SashXB-style programming is security. Its
easy-to-use interface opens application development to all, including
those who might think it's amusing to tuck a virus into program code.
To protect against this, the Sash "weblication manager" provides
verification tools that clearly state what a program's contents are and
how they will affect the computer it runs on. Users can also choose to
block any weblication's access to selected system resources.
IBM has made the source code for SashXB available under the GNU Lesser
General Public License . The Lesser license is sometimes chosen when
companies know or hope that their code will be used in both open- and
IBM hopes that SashXB will be incorporated into Eclipse, Java-based
open-source software that enables developers to use tools from multiple
suppliers in their projects.
More information about the TriLUG