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What's in Scala 2.12

In a roadmap published in Scala’s website last June 30, 2014, stated their plan for the new Scala version – Scala 2.12.

While Scala 2.10 and Scala 2.11 use previous versions of Java, the distribution for Scala 2.12 will be entirely built and will require Java 8. Therefore, in preparation for the Scala 2.12, the next releases of Scala 2.11.x, “Java 8-style closure compilation: Miguel’s new back-end & optimizer” will be introduced as experimental features. The Scala team is also planning to have an easy cross-building between 2.11 and 2.12 using full backward source compatibility. Version 2.11 and 2.12 compiler and standard library code bases will be aligned closely to achieve a smooth transition to Java 8.

The roadmap also listed the following shared features of Scala 2.11 (under a flag) and 2.12:

    Use of method handles to compile lambdas
    Java 8 interop (bidirectional)
    Miguel’s new back-end & optimizer
    Style checker
    Collections enhancement
    Improvement on documentation
    Continuous improvements on infrastructure such as sbt build, pull request validation & release automation, bug tracker cleanup and automation.

On the fourth quarter of 2014, infrastructure development for 2.12 will start and the development for transition will be on 2015. Below is the schedule which they follow:

2.10.0             |             04/01/2013             |             First 2.10.x release

Visualize.js: Framework for Embedded Analytics and Reports

Jaspersoft, a new acquisition of TIBCO Software, is an open source software vendor that concentrates in providing products used for Business Intelligence (BI).

TIBCO Software recently released Jaspersoft’s newest product – Jaspersoft 5.6. It includes a new Javascript framework that offers built-in analytics and reports called Visualize.js.

The Jaspersoft group came up with Visualize.js because they envision that analytics “is becoming a core component and differentiator of applications and services” for application developers. There is now an increase growth in embedding analytic functionality, however, it is “too complex or too costly” to implement. Jaspersoft’s solution was to incorporate REST and iFrame approaches in this product. "REST gives you a lot of control, but it's very code-intensive to embed. iFrame is simple, but essentially a dumb terminal window. We give you the best of both worlds. You get the control of REST with the simplicity of iFrames. With just a couple of lines of JavaScript, you can embed pretty much any part of our server.” Karl van den Vergh, Jaspersoft’s Senior Vice President said.

Visualize.js equips your applications with the following features:

    Embed Analytics Anywhere - it has the ability of an analytic server with the control of JavaScript and is available as a cloud service.
    Combine Big Data with Relational Data – Data from MongoDB, Hadoop or Cassandra can be combined with relational data using Visualize.js.
    Powerful Analytic Functions – provides new built-in analytic calculations and functions.

Swift: New Programming Language for Apple

Objective-C is the primary programming language used to develop Mac OS X and iOS applications for the past decades. However, earlier this June, Apple released its new programming language called Swift.

Apple described that writing code with Swift is interactive and fun, the syntax is concise yet expressive, and apps run lightning-fast; Swift code works side-by-side with Objective-C thus ready to use for your next iOS and OS X project – or for addition into your current app.

The following are some of Swift language’s best features:

Modern Programming Language

    Swift is the result of research on programming languages that takes the best features of C and Object-C, removing the restrictions on C compatibility.
    APIs are easy to read and maintain.
    Cleaner codes.
    Managed memory automatically using Automatic Reference Counting (ARC).
    Typing semi-colons is no longer needed.

User-Friendly

    Ideal for new programmers as it uses Playgrounds that show results immediately after typing a line of code which makes writing simple and fun.
    Adopts the readability of Objective-C’s named parameters and the power of Objective-C’s dynamic object model.
    Offer easy access to existing Cocoa frameworks.

Read-Eval-Print-Loop (REPL)

    A built-in interactive version of Swift language is included in Xcode’s debugging console or in Terminal. To evaluate and interact with a running app or see how a newly written code works in a script-like environment, use Swift syntax.

Safe

    Removes all classes of unsafe code.
    Always initialized variables before use.
    Checks arrays and integers for overflow.
    Safe patterns in Swift are adjusted for the Cocoa and Cocoa Touch APIs.
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