Oracle has got no choice but to get it right on Java, according to Java founder James Gosling, who has voiced some support for the database giant's proposed changes.
According to Infoworld, Gosling is told told TheServerSide Java Symposium that with a large part of Oracle's business dependent on Java, "it's in their own self interest not to be aggressively stupid."
Oracle's entire middleware line is built on Java. The company paid $8.5bn to own BEA Systems' WebLogic Application Server, and it shelled out a further $5.6bn for Sun Microsystems, grabbing Java itself. Before that, Oracle was already vested in Java through its existing application server, since spiked for WebLogic, and the JDeveloper IDE.
Last year, Oracle told the group responsible for approving changes to Java - the Java Community Process (JCP) - that it was going ahead with its Java Standard Edition (Java SE) roadmap no matter what. Oracle also told the JCP it would not grant a license to the Apache Software Foundation's (ASF's) Java implementation, Project Harmony.
Back to to 2007, when Sun owned Java and dominated the JCP and Oracle was a mere JCP member, Oracle joined others in demanding Harmony be granted a Java license. Oracle also submitted a vote that the JCP be turned into an "open independent vendor-neutral Standards organization" free from the control of any one company.
But now, Oracle is running the show, thanks to its acquisition of Sun. Gosling, once a Sun fellow and vice president, told TSS: "They [Oracle] basically admitted that we were doing the right thing."
Gosling served briefly as Oracle's chief technology officer for client software, leaving in April 2010. For the record, the company was "an extremely unpleasant environment."
According to numerous Tweets from TSS in Las Vegas, Nevada, Gosling said he was pleased that Oracle added "a bunch of UI stuff" to JDK7, submitted by Oracle to the JCP in November and due for completion in July this year.
In other Tweeted comments, Gosling said he "could hardly care less" about the Java language. The Java Virtual Machine (JVM) is now the important thing. Engineers at Sun had been working on making other languages run in the JVM before Oracle bought Sun.
Also, he said that Java Enterprise Edition (EE) 6 makes it "remarkably easy" to build Web apps and "that the word cloud has become really, really annoying". Oracle's just submitted Java EE 7 to the JCP as part of a roadmap to make Java better suited to building Java apps for the cloud. ®