[whatwg] Web Apps 1.0 Editorial: IDL Bindings

Elliotte Harold elharo at metalab.unc.edu
Sun Feb 4 14:27:54 PST 2007

For a few years I spent a lot of time teaching DOM to mixed audiences: 
i.e. Java. JavaScript, C++ and other language programmers in the same 
room. Initially I described a lot of examples in IDL to try not to 
offend anybody. Instead, as it happened, I annoyed everyone equally.

I rapidly learned that almost nobody was actually comfortable reading 
IDL. Showing the Java bindings with some hand waving and an example or 
two of how this mapped to C++ and JavaScript satisfied everyone a lot 
more than IDL. I soon dropped all the IDL material from my notes. No one 
missed it.

I understand  why DOM and now Web Apps 1.0 needed to be *defined* in 
terms of IDL, but I suspect it would be very helpful if there were 
normative (or perhaps non-normative) appendices that showed the bindings 
to at least Java, and possibly other languages as well. This would be 
much easier for most programmers to read and understand.

I don't yet see any placeholder in the spec for this. My apologies if I 
missed it; but I do think this would be a very useful addition for 
pedagogical reasons if nothing else.

For myself, I am working on some Web Apps 1.0 notes at the moment, and 
am translating the IDL into Java by hand just to make it a little 
clearer to my audience.

Elliotte Rusty Harold  elharo at metalab.unc.edu
Java I/O 2nd Edition Just Published!

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