On Wednesday, June 18, 2003, at 03:36 PM, Martin DeMello wrote:

> [snip]
>>
>> Or better yet (perhaps), an "on-the-fly" converter of older formats to
>> the newer format.
>
> I'm unconvinced this is better - we don't want to encourage data to 
> hang
> around in the old format, after all.
>
> martin

How about a callable method that will read from the old format, when 
encountered, and write back in the new format (a permanent conversion) 
so that initially there is a conversion load that decreases as more 
marshalled objects are encountered. One could also have an option to 
permanently convert all marshalled objects that can be found at a 
particular time to the new format. I'm assuming that, because this is 
for a networked application, that all marshalled objects may not be 
simultaneously available and that there may be so many marshalled 
objects that one would want to defer conversion until necessary. I'm 
also assuming that the newer format has been adopted because it 
provides superior features justifying the resources used to convert 
formats. If not, one could just make sure that the older format is 
available to the application (although this may not be a trivial thing 
to do).