The Rat reports from Epicentral on California's JavaOne and SD '97

Then the weary whiskered one had to provide tech support to the clueless car rental
agent, who couldn't figure out how to make the credit card reader work.

 At the hotel, the electronic key system failed. The cranky Rat bored holes in the
wall with his nose while the hotel engineer played digital locksmith.

 To top things off, the Rat's modem card made up its mind to commit suicide, so he
was without e-mail and remote access.

 By the time JavaOne opened, things seemed better. The wired one was cheered by a
Netscape Communications Corp. demo of Visual JavaScript, set for summer release. It will
let bit-pushers build applications with client and server parts using an interface that
resembles Microsoft Visual Basic.

 Unlike VB, though, it uses actual standards to create distributed applications. How

 Netscape's tool relies heavily on SunSoft Inc.'s Java Beans component technology,
which promises to liberate us from more bad coffee puns by subjecting us instead to bad
names for beans.  

The Packet Rat once managed networks but now spends his time ferreting out bad
packets in cyberspace. E-mail him at [email protected].

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