RMIUG Meeting Minutes - Java and the Web
The Tuesday, February 13 meeting of the Rocky Mountain Internet Users Group
(RMIUG) featured a high-level presentation
on a new technology called Java that is
profoundly impacting the World Wide Web.
Mr. Dean Rizzuto (firstname.lastname@example.org),
World Wide Web Developer with XOR Network
Engineering, presented a non-technical overview
of Java and how it will affect the Internet
and impact Web users. The meeting started
at 7:00 with Dan Murray welcoming people
to our largest RMIUG meeting to date.
This month is RMIUG's 2-year anniversary
-- we now have 1000+ members on our -announce
mailing list. Thank you all for making RMIUG
Announcements from the floor:
- The Internet Chamber of Commerce (http://www.icc.org)
is holding its next meeting on February
28th at 6pm (6-7pm is the pasta bar/networking
and 7pm the speaker starts). The meeting
is held at the Downtown Denver Embassy
Suites. This month's speaker is Jack Rickard,
the editor/publisher of Boardwatch.
- Bob Wells (email@example.com)
is writing a book about cable modems and
is looking for a good contact in the industry.
- Joe Ilacqua (firstname.lastname@example.org)
announced that Indra's Net is starting
a dialup-ISDN service. They are currently
looking for people that already have an
ISDN line and ISDN hardware to beta-test
the service for free.
- CU's 48th annual Conference on World
Affairs will be held on the CU campus
in Boulder throughout the week of Apr.
8-12. This year it will include a fair
amount of attention to Internet issues.
This conference will also deal with many
subjects besides the Internet (including,
among others: world politics, music and
the arts, gender issues, and environmental
issues) Roger Ebert, Molly Ivans, Steve
Allen, and many other well known writers,
thinkers, artists, and scholars will be
here. To learn more about the CWA, please
check out their web site at: http://osiris.colorado.edu/~cwa/
- Colorado HealthNet (CHN), a nonprofit
corporation, provides Colorado information
for persons with chronic illnesses, and
includs facts and statistics, as well
as information about local support services,
treatment providers, medical resources,
and new clinical and research developments.
The chronic illnesses covered are: Arthritis,
Asthma, Cancer, COPD (emphysema), Diabetes,
Fibromyalgia, HIV/AIDS, Kidney Dialysis,
Lupus, Multiple Sclerosis, and Organ Transplants.
CHN is also a one-stop information center
in that it also contains information on
Colorado-based insurers, HMOs, and PPOs.
The URL for Colorado HealthNet is http://bcn.boulder.co.us/health/chn/
- RMIUG has a new librarian -- Carroll
Blend (email@example.com). Thanks
to Carroll for taking over this responsibility!
Dean's talk started with a general
overview of Java -- what it is (a programming
language) and what its components are (a
compiler and an interpreter). He then moved
on to discuss why Java is so revolutionary.
Java is the first widely accepted programming
language which is "platform independent."
This means that a user on a UNIX system
and a user on a Windows 95 system can both
download the same "bytecode" program, and
then use their local Java interpreter to
run it. No longer is it necessary to create
individual runnable programs for each different
type of machine.
Currently, Java is only supported on two
interpreters/browsers: Netscape 2.0 and
Sun Microsystem's HotJava (Sun is the developer
of the Java language). Currently, the only
supported platforms are Windows 95/NT and
some UNIX platforms. Macintosh, OS/2, and
others are coming soon.
On the Web, Java is used to create what
are known as "applets." These are mini-programs
written in the Java language. Through the
Web, they are downloaded and then actually
run inside the browser.
Although you need to be a programmer to
develop in Java (Java is very similar to
C++), many Java "applets" are easily reusable.
For example, there are generic Java applets
that can animate any series of images. You
don't need to be a programmer to use the
applet to animate your own Web page.
can be "inlined" into HTML code and is easier
is only supported in Netscape's browser
and is not as powerful as the real Java
One of the main concerns of Web users
is that of security. Java has several security
mechanisms in place to attempt to block
any malicious intent.
Some of the implications of Java include:
- The need for greater bandwidth (although
Java applets are small, they usually have
a lot of "baggage" with them, such as
- "Good" Web sites will be the result
of technical programmers rather than HTML
- There will be more interactive features
and online games on the Web.
URLs mentioned in the talk:
- General Java Information
- Java Developer's Kit
- Netscape 2.0
- Getting Started with Java
- HTML Applet Tag Information
RMIUG wishes to thank Internet One
of Boulder for sponsoring the refreshments,
NIST for the use of their meeting room,
and XOR Network Engineering for maintenance
of RMIUG's WWW site and email lists.
Suggestions/comments/feedback are always
welcome - please email these to firstname.lastname@example.org.
RMIUG has 3 email lists for its members.
Send an Email to email@example.com
for an auto-reply message with more information.
The Tuesday, March 12 meeting of the Rocky
Mountain Internet Users Group (RMIUG) will
feature a panel discussion called "Web Fest
`96" on the strategic and business issues
of commerce on the World Wide Web. Among
the panelists will be Mark Richtermeyer,
General Manager of Customer Communication
Group's Online Division, and Shelli Meyers,
President of Indra's Net, a Boulder-based
Internet Service Provider. Panelists will
be discussing case studies of actual businesses
on the Internet, factors that lead to success,
and business issues to consider when initiating
a commercial Internet site. This non-technical
presentation will be aimed at a broad audience,
including businesses that are not yet familiar
with the Internet, but are interested in
the commercial possibilities of this rapidly