PRE-PROPOSAL: Source and Encoding keyword

Neal Gafter neal at
Sun Mar 15 16:57:53 PDT 2009

On Sun, Mar 15, 2009 at 4:54 PM, Neal Gafter <neal at> wrote:
> On Sun, Mar 15, 2009 at 2:31 PM, Reinier Zwitserloot
> <reinier at> wrote:
>> Here's the golden rule in regards to the source proposal:
>> It's already a part of java, via javac -source. Just about every
>> problem mentioned so far is either not a problem, or if it is, should
>> be filed as a bug, because it also applies to javac -source.
> javac's command line is not part of the Java programming language.
> The proposed construct would be.  Therefore, the proposed construct
> would have to be described precisely in the JLS, including every
> effect it would have on every other language feature.  In addition,
> since it would now be part of the language, the specification would
> have to describe precisely what happens when you combine translation
> units with different source settings in every possible combination for
> every language construct affected.  I don't see how that could
> possibly be done without a major overhaul of the language
> specification.

I should add that the Java programming language is part of the Java SE
platform specification.  The javac command line is NOT part of the
Java SE platform specification.  That's why the JCP-defined spec
doesn't have to specify these things today, but would have to if it
were to become part of the language.

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