Welcome to J/Link, a product that integrates Mathematica and Java. J/Link lets you call Java from Mathematica in a completely transparent way, and it also lets you use and control the Mathematica kernel from a Java program. For Mathematica users, J/Link makes the whole universe of existing and future Java classes an automatic extension to the Mathematica environment. For Java programmers, J/Link turns Mathematica into a scripting shell that lets you experiment with, build, and test Java classes a line at a time. It also makes Java the ideal language for writing programs that use the computational services of Mathematica. J/Link’s most unique feature is that it lets you load arbitrary Java classes into Mathematica and then create Java objects, call methods, and access fields directly from the Mathematica language. Thus, you can use Mathematica to ”script” the functionality of an arbitrary Java program—in effect, writing a Java program in Mathematica. Essentially anything you can do from Java you can now do from Mathematica, perhaps even more easily because you are working in a true interpreted environment. For example, you can now create a Java-based user interface entirely with Mathematica code. This could be anything from a simple progress bar for a long computation to a dialog box or sophisticated wizard that walks users through a calculation. Such an interface is completely portable and can make full use of AWT, Swing, or any other user-interface class library.

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