The 28th IPP Symposium
Building Components on the Network
Jim Waldo, Sun Microsystems
Component technologies have traditionally been targeted towards building applications that exist in a single address space. But enforcing such component models has been problematic, as programmers often trade off the isolation needed to comply fully with the component framework for gains in performance. The trend recently has been towards component frameworks in which network services are used as the building blocks of larger applications. Many of the component models that have been proposed have often been found difficult to change.
We discuss the Jini networking technology as a component framework based on mobile objects that allows the isolation of a network component system while allowing great flexibility in the evolution of the applications using the system. We show how violating some of the traditional assumptions of distributed component systems has enabled us to build a component framework that lets the network system evolve in interesting and important ways.