Chapter 11. Overview of the JNI Design

This chapter gives an overview of the JNI design. Where necessary, we also provide the underlying technical motivation. The design overview serves as the specification for key JNI concepts such as the JNIEnv interface pointer, local and global references, and field and method IDs. The technical motivation aims at helping the reader to understand various design trade-offs. On a few occasions, we will discuss how certain features may be implemented. The purpose of such discussion is not to present a practical implementation strategy, but instead to clarify the subtle semantic issues.

The concept of a programming interface that bridges different languages is not new. For example, C programs can typically call ...

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