Sun Java goes Open Source!

After 2 years of pressure from the open-source community, Sun has finally decided to open-source Java. Sun was previously worried about compatibility and forking, since people could make their own versions or move towards other goals, making Java lose focus. The prime example was Linux. Some say Sun was afraid of losing control of Java. Whether they are really convinced now that open source is the way to go, or to pull up their stagnant stock prices…

In one of the issues in 2004, the president of the Open Source Initiative (OSI) dropped an open letter to then Sun CEO Scott McNealy touting that Sun is just using open-source as marketing but not really supporting it [1]. He compared Java and Sun to Tiger Woods and his dad, who supported his child by recognizing and letting him achieve his full potential from an early age. He says Sun is restricting Java’s potential, and it would not help even if Sun releases it later, as Woods would not have done it too if he started only later.

The saga went on with Sun spokesman replying to the media (but not to the sender) rebutting each of his points in exact quotes, and OSI president writing a second open letter in response…

Sun have announced that they’re doing it for sure, but its CEO is seeking advice on HOW it should be done.

[1] http://www.catb.org/~esr/writings/let-java-go.html
[2] http://news.zdnet.com/2100-9593_22-6072760.html
[3] http://www.vnunet.com/vnunet/news/21562 … ource-java
[4] http://www.iht.com/articles/2006/05/17/business/sun.php

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