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MSDN Home > MSJ > May 1998
May 1998

Microsoft Systems Journal Homepage

Editor's Note

CNN recently reported that students in the United States ranked near the bottom worldwide for scholastic aptitude in math. Apparently, that's not the only subject where we need remedial work. During the report we noticed that they spelled it on screen as "Mathmatics" and "Mathmatically". This whole episode would have been averted if CNN had some form of IntelliSense.
Even the Visual J++ folks have IntelliSense now. At the Spring Internet World in March, the latest beta of Visual J++, officially known as Microsoft Visual J++ 6.0 Technology Preview 1, was released to the Web (RTW'd that is) at http://www.microsoft.com/VisualJ. IntelliSense was just one of the cool new features that really captured our interest. As in the Visual Basic RAD environment, IntelliSense in the Visual J++ IDE prevents those annoying spelling errors. And using the Statement Completion component, all methods for any Java object (not just classes that ship with the product!) are presented in a popup window as you code. The Quick Info component even offers information on the parameters of a particular method as you type.
Also introduced in Visual J++ are Windows Foundation Classes (WFC), similar to MFC in Visual C++. More than 100 extensible WFC objects fall into four basic classes—GUI, data access, Dynamic HTML, and system. The GUI classes include all of the window controls we've grown to love. ActiveX Data Objects are, surprise, encapsulated in the data access classes. To present your users with today's rockin'est Web experience, both your client and server code can take advantage of the robust Dynamic HTML classes. Finally, your file and memory management needs can be met via the system classes.
Because WFC is built using J/Direct, which bypasses the Java middleware APIs, you can write your applications with the ease of the Java language, yet obtain the efficiency of a native Windows-based application.
In light of our Windows CE coverage this month, we would be remiss if we didn't add that developers for both embedded systems and the Handheld PC have access to free betas of the Windows CE Toolkit for Visual J++ 1.1. This beta release includes the Microsoft Virtual Machine for Java for Windows CE that runs on any Windows CE-supported processor for the Handheld PC. In addition you will find a Java language compiler and other useful utilities and samples for deploying your application to the Handheld PC. One utility allows you to take the Java class libraries that you use in your applications and combine them into DLLs that can be installed on your Handheld PC.
The Toolkit for Visual J++ includes new features that weren't found in the Microsoft SDK for Java for Windows CE (which RTW'd in January). Emulation of a Handheld PC on your desktop means you can develop and debug applications written in Java for the Handheld PC—no device required. You can also remotely debug Java applications running on your Handheld PC from Visual J++ on your desktop. With auto-download and execute, you can target your Handheld PC and run your Java application. The files are automatically downloaded to your Handheld PC and run.
The Windows CE Toolkit for Visual J++ 1.1, as well as the other Windows CE developer betas, can be found at http://msdn.microsoft.com/downloads/default.asp? URL=/code/topic.asp?URL=/msdn-files/028/000/219/topic.xml.
And while the math skores of the nation's students could use sum improvement, we prefer to look optomistically two wards the future in which IntelliSense can save us all from alotta headakes.

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