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   Will Father Moore save us from our sins? - was Re: [xml-dev] Eclipse: th

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On Apr 5, 2004, at 12:00 PM, Bob Foster wrote:

>  The question is, do you want to spend your time optimizing away the 
> need for a <$100 memory chip?

That's one of the most profound questions the XML world faces, IMHO.  
On the surface the answer is obvious - NO!  It is cheaper to just buy 
memory (maybe even for your customers!)  than to spend time time/speed 
optimizing code or bandwidth.  But on the other hand ....

- Memory, bandwidth, and even processor speed are still precious on 
mobile devices.  Do you want to shut them out of your market?  
Obviously that's not a consideration for Eclipse plugins :-)

- Batteries aren't covered by Moore's Law.  
http://www.wired.com/wired/archive/12.04/start.html?pg=2 has a nice 
rant on this subject.

- More generally, as the Wired piece implies, there's sortof a tragedy 
of the commons here -- EVERYONE assumes that bandwidth/memory/power is 
inexhaustible, exacerbating the problem in environments where it's a 
limiting factor.

I think all this gets back to the advantages/disadvantages of 
standardization we've been talking about.  XML's text basis, Java's 
virtual machine, Eclipse's loosely coupled architecture all have very 
distinct advantages that are widely touted.  They also have 
disadvantages, mainly in the area of performance/resource overhead.  
It's important not to oversell the advantages to people who are going 
to be hurt by the disadvantages, and it's important to try to 
ameliorate the disadvantages in a way that does not negate the real 


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