[Wired] Sun Opens Java Management Process

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From: Adam Rifkin -4K (adam@XeNT.ics.uci.edu)
Date: Sat May 06 2000 - 03:00:08 PDT

Whaddaya think, too little too late?


[Have I mentioned that I hate HTML files with these stupid commas in
them? Are commas-in-filenames a Vignette-ism? And while I'm asking
questions, where did the name "script kiddie" come from?]

Note that Sun is still not handing Java over to a standards body.
This isn't open source, it's just all of Microsoft's enemies getting
together. Admit it, deep down Scott McNealy *wants* to be Steve Ballmer.

> Sun Opens Java Management Process
> by Andy Patrizio, 3:00 a.m. May. 4, 2000 PDT
> Sun Microsystems hopes to silence open-source critics and bring more
> industry leaders into the Java fold by revamping the way the company
> oversees management of its Java development group.
> To date, Sun has made all the decisions regarding the direction for
> Java. In a major change for the Palo Alto, California-based company, Sun
> is forming an executive committee that will include 16 members from
> other Java players. The committee, with executives from Oracle, IBM, and
> Novell, will decide which proposals for new specs are approved for
> development.
> Sun officials said they made the change to garner more confidence among
> end-users and other developers.
> "Companies are making five-year business plans around Java. They would
> feel much more comfortable if they knew not just one for-profit company
> was making decisions around the future of the platform," said Ken
> Urquhart, architect of Sun's Java Community Process.
> An additional committee of Java programmers will perform technical
> reviews of proposed changes or additions to the Java platform. It will
> range from 10 to 20 members, depending on the complexity of the project.
> Member companies include IBM, Oracle, Novell, Apple, Bluestone, Compaq,
> and Fujitsu Software.
> Another panel of key Java technology users will handle revisions and
> changes to the JCP itself. The panel created JCP 2.0 and submitted it to
> Sun for review, which has in turn made it public so developers can
> review it and comment. For the month of May, Sun wants smaller companies
> to offer their input on any changes they want in the JCP.
> "This is the time small developers need to look at it and say if it
> meets their needs," Urquhart said. "I know this goes a long way to meet
> the needs of big companies because they've had all the input up to now.
> For the small companies, this is the time to speak out."
> One of those smaller companies, MicroWare Systems, which develops
> software and tools for writing embedded Java applications to run on
> real-time operating system OS-9, likes the direction Sun is moving with
> the whole community program.
> "Before companies will trust in any way not to be manipulated by Sun,
> Sun needs to give up as much control as they can. I think that's the
> goal here and it will help," said Peter Dibble, a senior scientist with
> MicroWare.
> Dibble thinks Sun has been pretty well-behaved in the development
> process, considering it had plenty of opportunities to abuse its
> position.
> "Most people think Sun's pretty upstanding, but should they go nuts or
> get a (new) CEO, they can suddenly jerk Java out from underneath us if
> they wanted to," he said. "In the end, this will mean that a lot of new
> APIs will happen more quickly than they would if it was completely
> centralized control."
> But Rick Ross, founder of the Java Lobby, thinks the new program, while
> an improvement, still falls short of Sun's original promise to turn over
> Java to a neutral-standards body, something Sun hinted at doing but
> never did.
> "The king has a court now, fantastic. But the king still makes
> decisions," Ross said. "I have to give Sun credit for making what
> appears to be an honest effort, but I believe that Sun should honor its
> original promise to hand the technology over to a recognized standards body.
> "That way everyone who wishes to invest in the technology can do it with
> confidence that no single economic interest will be able to divert the
> technology's evolution for the sake of its gain."


.sig double play!

Sun is heading for the rafters. They keep climbing farther, farther, farther up the tower. Thank goodness the tower still has some room, but someday they will find there's a ceiling up there. -- Steve Ballmer, Fortune magazine, April 17, 2000, p. 168

The hype: Sun claims to be a leader in system reliability and more reliable than Windows. The reality: Major customers, such as Quote.com, are switching from Sun to the Microsoft Windows platform because it offers better reliability. -- Fortune magazine quoting Microsoft.com, April 17, 2000, p. 166

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