Scala 2.8.0 approaches with RC1 release
The Scala team have announced the first release candidate of the "much-awaited" Scala 2.8.0. Scala, an object-oriented, functional language, which runs on the Java virtual machine, has become popular with Java developers as an alternative way to develop code that makes use of Java based infrastructure.
Scala 2.8.0 RC1 includes a range of new features. Most notably, a completely redesigned collections library which maintains "virtually complete compatibility with existing sources". Other improvements include a new optimised array implementation, support for named and default arguments and package objects for associating methods and fields with packages. Continuation support is now available as part of the main distribution of Scala, provided by a compiler plug-in. Swing support, annotations, the XML library and actors have also been improved.
The Scala developers say that thanks to optimising the compiler, it runs 50% faster. A new presentation compiler, to allow better IDE integration, and a new build manager, further enhance the tool chain. The release also incorporates a large number of bug fixes. The BSD licensed Scala 2.8.0RC1 release is available to download. As a preliminary release intended for testing purposes it is not ready for production use.