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Comment Re:And in 3, 2, 1... (Score 2) 58

Sounds like they *still* haven't managed to get a true offline version working yet.

Previous versions were horribly network dependent. Gradle would pull megs and megs of data whenever you started a new project (and at various other times). If you have a _fast_ network, it isn't too bad. If the end point is slow, or your ISP is typical American sloth service, expect to wait.

The less bad news was that their *offline* switch (which is actually a cached switch) will minimize those occurrences (usually) *after* you've waited through the initial construction.

The sad part is that there is *nothing* inherent in gradle that requires that behaviour. The devs could have chosen to package it to include the needed base libraries and default to a local gradle build.

Comment Re: Profiting on the Backs of Others (Score 1) 457

Actually, the reason they used their own byte code was because the 'official' one is poorly suited to mobile use. One of the major changes between Dalvik and the original Java run time is related to stacks vs heaps. There are others as well.

Google redesigned the run time to work better on mobile. JavaSE wasn't designed for that, JavaME isn't much better.

You shouldn't confuse the byte code/run time with the API's. Google stripped what they felt were unneeded API's and added ones they thought were missing. What Google did was to leverage the existing JavaSE developer knowledge base to create a straight forward path for people to develop for Android.

The alternative, and what Google may end up doing, is to replace Java with Go, Dart, or some other home grown language for primary Android development. While this would have been unthinkable when Android was first released, it's now gotten enough market share that developers are more willing to switch development languages to continue to develop Android applications. Even Apple's now doing it (see Swift).
 

Comment Re:Profiting on the Backs of Others (Score 1) 457

Oracle open sourced the desktop version of Java (Java SE) after the Google mess, but requires people to pay licensing fees to use the mobile version of Java (Java ME).

There were several alternate Java run times besides the official Sun one; Kaffe, SableVM, gcj, Harmony, etc.

Even for the relatively open/free Java SE, in order to pass the compatibility suite, needed to call your implementation 'Java' you had to agree to 'field of use restrictions'. Including agreeing NOT to use your version of JavaSE on mobile (so as not to threaten Oracle's license stream). It was one of the major sticking point with Apache's Harmony implementation. The 'field of use restriction' was incompatible with Harmony's license.

The Harmony implementation is what Google initially based Android's Java on. Eventually Oracle and Apache came to an 'understanding' when Oracle released the OpenSE JDK and IBM pulled support for Harmony. If you look carefully, you'll notice that there _still_ isn't an open Java ME.

So what Google did was to re-purpose Harmony JavaSE as an unencumbered JavaSE implementation. They didn't have any license agreement with Sun/Oracle, and didn't reuse the name, byte code or run time (as both were poorly suited to running under mobile). Sun's management boasted of their support for Google's actions. Oracle tried to memory-hole that support when they took over.

Comment Re:No, We Don't... (Score 1) 273

"The "gotcha" with Uber is what happens when a driver is simultaneously driving for Lyft, Uber, and the Pizza Company? Has he achieved a nexus where he is independent?"

Why would that be any kind of a nexus? That's simply holding down more than one job.

With current wages being as low as they are [and have been for quite some time] lots of people have to hold down multiple jobs just to make ends meet. I can't see why that would magically convert them from W2 employees to 1099 independent contractors.

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