Sun to Serve Up Free Java

    November 13, 2006

Sun Microsystems, Inc. announced the release of Java technology as free software under the GNU General Public License version two (GPLv2). The first portions of source code for Java Platform Standard Edition (Java SE) and Java Platform Micro Edition (Java ME) will be made available today.

Rich Green, executive vice president of Software at Sun, comments on the announcement, “By open sourcing Sun’s implementation of Java technology, we will inspire a new phase of developer collaboration and innovation using the NetBeans Integrated Development Environment (IDE) and expect the Java platform to be the foundation infrastructure for next generation Internet, desktop, mobile and enterprise applications.”

“With the Java Development Kit (JDK) released as free software under the GPL, Sun will be working closely with distributors of the GNU/Linux operating system, who will soon be able to include the JDK as part of the open source repositories that are commonly included with GNU/Linux distributions.”

To provide support for the project, Sun has launched three open-source Java community websites:

As the heart of the Java platform, Java SE is the execution engine and core development technology that enables the Java technology’s “write once, run anywhere” promise. By open sourcing the Java Development Kit (JDK), Sun’s implementation of Java SE, Sun hopes to make the Java platform a new foundation of innovation and enhance its value as the ubiquitous, essential infrastructure of the Internet experience.

Mobile & Embedded
The Mobile & Embedded community site establishes a central location for the collaborative development of open source Java ME technologies and applications. Deployed in over 1.5 billion mobile handsets, Java ME represents the ideal development platform for the creation and deployment of mobile data services. By open sourcing implementations of Java ME, Sun will enable the community to accelerate platform innovation, reduce development costs through the Java ME ecosystem, and, ultimately, drive a more consistent application platform.

The GlassFish open-source community collaborates on developing the Java EE Reference Implementation. The community delivers production-quality code, including a fully featured application server, TopLink Essentials, a Maven repository, and other components and tools that multiple companies and groups now use.

Tim Bray, Director of Web Technologies continues in his blog, “I’m committed to Open Source but not generally a member of the Free Software movement. For Java, though, it’s the only thing that makes sense.”

“It’s been given away freely for so long, and it’s worked its way into so many places, that it should belong to the community, and if anyone figures out how to make it better, they should just bloody well give that discovery back. So for my money, the GPL’s the only sane choice.”

More information on the launch of open-source Java can be found at

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Joe is a staff writer for WebProNews. Visit WebProNews for the latest ebusiness news.