Java: the Early Years.

I Find Karma (
Fri, 20 Feb 1998 05:39:31 -0800

Virginia Tech has a cool class "WWW: Beyond the Basics"

which, although written in 1996, has chapters that still serve as decent
introductions to:

History and evolution of the WWW
Existing and evolving Web standards
Effective representation of information on the WWW
Use of object technology for the WWW (including CORBA)
Social and legal issues surrounding the WWW
The future of the Web

For example, Shahrooz Feizabadi <> gives us the early
history of Java at

included below. It's a decent overview of the Java history, although
they fail to mention that the name "Java" came from our favorite
marketing genius, Kim Polese... and they also fail to mention then-CTO
Eric Schmidt's role in the mid-90's Java juggernaut...

> 1.4. History of Java
> At first glance, it may appear that Java was developed specifically for
> the world wide web. However, interestingly enough, Java was developed
> independently of the web, and went through several stages of
> metamorphosis before reaching its current status of de facto programming
> language for the world wide web. Below is a brief history of Java since
> its infancy to its current state.
> 1.4.1 Oak
> According the Java FAQ, [Harold] Bill Joy, currently a vice president at
> Sun Microsystems, is widely believed to have been the person to conceive
> of the idea of a programming language that later became Java. In late
> 1970's, Joy wanted to design a language that combined the best features
> of MESA and C. In an attempt to re-write the UNIX operating system in
> 1980's, Joy decided that C++ was inadequate for the job. A better tool
> was needed to write short and effective programs. It was this desire to
> invent a better programming tool that swayed Joy, in 1991, in the
> direction of Sun's "Stealth Project" - as named by Scott McNealy, Sun's
> president. [Harold]
> In January of 1991, Bill Joy, James Gosling, Mike Sheradin, Patrick
> Naughton (formerly the project leader of Sun's OpenWindows user
> environment), and several other individuals met in Aspen, Colorado for
> the first time to discuss the ideas for the Stealth Project. The goal of
> the Stealth Project was to do research in the area of application of
> computers in the consumer electronics market. The vision of the project
> was to develop "smart" consumer electronic devices that could all be
> centrally controlled and programmed from a handheld-remote-control-like
> device. According to Gosling, "the goal was ... to build a system that
> would let us do a large, distributed, heterogeneous network of consumer
> electronic devices all talking to each other." With this goal in mind,
> the stealth group began work. [O'Connell]
> Members of the Stealth Project, which later became known as the Green
> Project, divided the tasks amongst themselves. Mike Sheradin was to
> focus on business development, Patrick Naughton was to begin work on the
> graphics system, and James Gosling was to identify the proper
> programming language for the project. Gosling who had joined Sun in
> 1984, had previously developed the commercially unsuccessful NeWS
> windowing system as well as GOSMACS - a C language implementation of GNU
> EMACS. He began with C++, but soon after was convinced that C++ was
> inadequate for this particular project. His extensions and modifications
> to C++ (also know as C++ ++ --), were the first steps towards the
> development of an independent language that would fit the project
> objectives. He named the language "Oak" while staring at an oak tree
> outside his office window! The name "Oak" was later dismissed due to a
> patent search which determined that the name was copyrighted and used
> for another programming language. According to Gosling, "the Java
> development team discovered that Oak was the name of a programming
> language that predated Sun's language, so another name had to be
> chosen." [O'Connell] [Harold]
> "It's surprisingly difficult to find a good name for a programming
> language, as the team discovered after many hours of
> brainstorming. Finally, inspiration struck one day during a trip to the
> local coffee shop" Gosling recalls. Others have speculated that the name
> Java came from several individuals involved in the project: James
> gosling, Arthur Van hoff, Andy bechtolsheim. [McCarthy]
> There were several criteria that Oak had to meet in order to satisfy the
> project objective given the consumer electronics target market. Given
> the wide array of manufacturers in the market, Oak would have to be
> completely platform independent, and function seamlessly regardless of
> the type of CPU in the device. For this reason, Oak was designed to be
> an interpreted language, since it would be practically impossible for a
> complied version to run on all available platforms. To facilitate the
> job of the interpreter, Oak was to be converted to an intermediate
> "byte-code" format which is then passed around across the network, and
> executed/interpreted dynamically. [O'Connell] [Harold] [McCarthy]
> Additionally, reliability was of great concern. A consumer electronics
> device that would have to be "rebooted" periodically was not acceptable.
> Another important design objective for Oak would then have to be high
> reliability by allowing the least amount of programmer-introduced
> errors. This was the motivation for several important modification to
> C++. The concepts of multiple-inheritance and operator overloading were
> identified as sources of potential errors, and eliminated in
> Oak. Furthermore, in contrast to C++, Oak included implicit garbage
> collection thereby providing efficient memory utilization and higher
> reliability. Finally, Oak attempted to eliminate all unsafe constructs
> used in C and C++ by only providing data structures within
> objects. [O'Connell] [McCarthy]
> Another essential design criterion was security. By design, Oak-based
> devices were to function in a network and often exchange code and
> information. Inherently, security is of great concern in a networked
> environment, especially in an environment as network dependent as the
> conceived Oak-based systems. For this reason, pointers were excluded in
> the design of Oak. This would theoretically eliminate the possibility of
> malicious programs accessing arbitrary addresses in memory. [O'Connell]
> [McCarthy]
> If Oak were to be widely accepted and used within the consumer
> electronics industry, it would have to be simple and compact, so that
> the language could be mastered relatively easily, and development would
> not be excessively complex. Some would argue that Oak/Java is C++ done
> right, but the jury is still out on that...
> In April of 1991, Ed Frank, a SPARCstation 10 architect, joined the
> green project. He led the project's hardware development effort. In two
> months, they developed the first hardware prototype known as star-seven
> (*7). The name *7 was somewhat demonstrative of the project's
> objective. *7 was the key combination to press on any telephone to
> answer any other ringing telephone on their network. In the meantime,
> Gosling was beginning work on the Oak interpreter. By August of 1991,
> the team had a working prototype of the user interface and graphical
> system which was demonstrated to Sun's co-founders Scott McNealy and
> Bill Joy. [O'Connell]
> Development of Oak, the green OS, the user interface, and the hardware
> continued through the summer of 1992. In September of that year, the *7
> prototype was complete and demonstrated to McNealy and Joy. The
> prototype was a PDA-like (personal digital assistant) device that
> Gosling described as a "handheld remote control." Patrick Naughton
> proclaimed that "in 18 months, we did the equivalent of what 75-people
> organizations at Sun took three years to do -- an operating system, a
> language, a toolkit, an interface, a new hardware platform, ..."
> [O'Connell]
> While impressive, the market was not conducive to this type of
> technology, as later demonstrated by Apple's Newton PDA. The Green
> project's business planner, Mike Sheradin, and hardware designer, Ed
> Frank had envisioned a technology similar to that of Dolby Labs which
> would become the standard for the consumer electronics
> products. [O'Connell]
> 1.4.2 FirstPerson
> In November of 1992, the Green Project is incorporated under the name
> FirstPerson. Given Java's lack of success in the consumer electronics
> industry, the company's direction was somewhat uncertain. Under Sun's
> influence, the company began re-evaluating its mission.
> In early 1993, Time-Warner issued an RFP (request for proposal) for a
> set-top box operating system and interactive, video-on-demand
> technology. FirstPerson identified this area as a new target market,
> and began working in that direction. However, despite FirstPerson's
> great efforts, SGI was granted the contract by Time-Warner. By mid 1993
> Sun began negotiating with 3DO to provide a Java-based OS for their
> set-top box. The negotiations were, however, unsuccessful and a deal was
> never made. FirstPerson was left on its own without any viable business
> prospects. Another attempt by the company to market its interactive TV
> technology fails when in February of 1994 a public launching of their
> products is canceled. [O'Connell]
> A Sun higher level review of FirstPerson determines the interactive TV
> market to be immature in 1994. FirstPerson then shifts its focus yet
> again. Business plans are submitted to Sun's executives for developing
> Oak-based on-line and CD-ROM applications. Sun's response was not
> favorable, and FirstPerson was dissolved. Most of FirstPerson's
> employees moved to Sun Interactive to digital video data
> servers. However, a few individuals from FirstPerson still pursued the
> objective of finding a home for Java in a networked desktop
> market. [O'Connell]
> 1.4.3 Java and the World Wide Web
> In June of 1994, Bill Joy started the "Liveoak" project with the stated
> objective of building a "big small operating" system. In July of 1994,
> the project "clicked" into place. Naughton gets the idea of putting
> "Liveoak" to work on the Internet while he was playing with writing a
> web browser over a long weekend. Just the kind of thing you'd want to do
> with your weekend! This was the turning point for Java. [O'Connell]
> The world wide web, by nature, had requirements such as reliability,
> security, and architecture independence which were fully compatible with
> Java's design parameters. A perfect match had been found. By September
> of 1994, Naughton and Jonathan Payne (a Sun engineer) start writing
> "WebRunner," a Java-based web browser which was later renamed "HotJava."
> By October 1994, HotJava is stable and demonstrated to Sun
> executives. This time, Java's potential, in the context of the world
> wide web, is recognized and the project is supported. Although designed
> with a different objective in mind, Java found a perfect match in the
> World Wide Web. Many of Java's original design criteria such as platform
> independence, security, and reliability were directly applicable to the
> World Wide Web as well. Introduction of Java marked a new era in the
> history of the web. Information provides were now given the capability
> to not only deliver raw data, but also the applications that would
> operate on the data.
> Sun formally announced Java and HotJava at SunWorld `95. Soon after,
> Netscape Inc. announced that it would incorporate Java support in their
> browser. This was a great triumph for Java since it was now supported by
> the most popular browser in the world. Later, Microsoft also announced
> that they would support Java in their Internet Explorer web browser,
> further solidifying Java's role in the World Wide Web.

So... where DID the name "Java" come from?

> So why did they decide to call it Java?
> Unabridged comments from key participants on the origin of the name
> Frank Yellin's remarks to JavaWorld
> JavaWorld: What is your recollection of the meeting in which the word
> "Java" was chosen as the name of Sun's new programming environment?
> Where was it held and when?
> Yellin: I don't remember the exact date of the meeting. There are people
> who keep better records than I do who might be able to give you a better
> answer. The lawyers had told us that we couldn't use the name OAK
> (because of Oak Technologies). So a brainstorming session was held to
> come up with ideas for a new name. The brainstorming session was
> attended by all members of what was then called the Live Oak group,
> those of us actively working on Java. There was also a facilitator, but
> I don't remember his name.
> The end result was about ten names. All of them were submitted to the
> legal department. Three of them came back clean: Java, DNA, and Silk. A
> vote was then held. Every person got to rank the three in order of their
> preference. It turns out that the same name that got the most
> "most-favorite votes" also got the most "least-favorite" votes. So it
> was dropped, and of the remaining two, Java got the most votes. So it
> became the name. Sun immediately went off and did all the trademark
> stuff it needed to do.
> JW: Who first suggested the name?
> Yellin: No one remembers who came up with the name. There have been
> several people suggesting other people who might have come up with the
> name first. Only one person, to the best of my knowledge, has ever
> suggested in public to being the creator of the name. No one else seems
> to have any recollection of this.
> In a recent interview with her, I read that Kim "co-developed" Java and
> that she was the one who decided that the best way to make Java
> successful was to give it away. I therefore tend to treat other
> uncorroborated claims she makes with a bit of skepticism.
> Kim Polese's remarks to JavaWorld
> JavaWorld: We are trying to nail down the details of how Java was
> named. As we understand it, Java was named in a brainstorming session to
> come up with a replacement for Oak. Java, DNA, and Silk were the three
> names that got through legal the best, because every possible name with
> "Web" or "Net" in it already was taken, including WebRunner. You have
> been quoted as saying that Java was suggested because it was "a name
> that sounded like it could give you a jolt but did not sound nerdy." Did
> you come up with the name?
> Polese: Yes, I named Java. I spent a lot of time and energy on naming
> Java because I wanted to get precisely the right name. I wanted a name
> that reflected the essence of the technology -- dynamic, revolutionary,
> lively, fun, gives the Web a jolt. Because this programming language was
> so unique, I was determined to avoid nerdy names. I also didn't want
> anything with Net or Web in it, because I find those names very
> forgettable. I wanted something that was cool, unique, and easy to spell
> and fun to say.
> I gathered the team together in a room, wrote up on the whiteboard words
> like "dynamic," "alive," "jolt," "impact," "revolutionary," etc., and
> led the group in brainstorming. The name emerged during one of those
> brainstorming sessions. Other names from the session: DNA, Silk, Ruby,
> and get this -- WRL (WebRunner Language -- yuck!!).
> I test-marketed the names at parties, and on every one of my friends and
> family members. Java got the most positive reactions of all the names,
> and I also liked it the best.
> Because it wasn't certain that we would get any of the names cleared
> through trademark, I selected about three or four and worked with the
> lawyers on clearing them. Java passed, and it was my favorite, so I
> named the language Java and subsequently named the browser HotJava, a
> much better name than "WebRunner"! The engineers had a hard time parting
> with the original code-name for the programming language, "Oak." But
> they finally got used to it.
> Then I hired a great graphic artist to design the Java logo -- Mark
> Andersen Design; he's done the 3DO logo, the Sun logo, and the Macintosh
> logo. I selected the coffee cup from the initial designs he suggested
> and worked with him on finalizing the look.
> I felt that name and branding was very important to ensuring the success
> and ubiquity of Java. Most programming languages have nerdy names and no
> logo and no branding. But because I wanted Java to be a standard, I felt
> it needed all the bells and whistles that consumer software products
> typically get, so I focused on building a very strong brand for Java. It
> worked. As Scott McNealy likes to say, Java is a more recognizable brand
> than Sun Microsystems itself is.
> Sami Shaio's remarks to JavaWorld
> JavaWorld: What is your recollection of the meeting in which the word
> "Java" was chosen as the name of Sun's new programming environment?
> Where was it held and when?
> Shaio: Oh, boy. Well let me look through my extensive archives. The
> meeting was held at the "TestPattern" conference room in "PAL2," which
> is the building at 100 Hamilton Ave., where all the Java-Internet thing
> happened. It's also the infamous building where OSF started, when it
> was known as the "Hamilton Group." I believe the meeting was held in
> perhaps January of 1995.
> JW: Who first suggested the name? What was the initial reaction?
> Shaio: It's actually hard to say where it first came from. We had
> various e-mail storms back then where people were suggesting names, and
> Java ended up on the list of candidates we considered at the meeting.
> JW: What other names were considered? Why were they rejected in favor of
> Java?
> Shaio: WRL, for WebRunner Language (WebRunner was the original name of
> HotJava but it turned out to be taken), Silk, Lyric, Pepper, NetProse,
> Neon, and a host of others too embarrassing to mention.
> JW: How was the decision made? Who gave the final OK?
> Shaio: Basically after numerous e-mail surveys filtered the list down to
> a manageable size we had the naming meeting. At the time we were trying
> to release the Alpha1 of Java (then known as Oak or actually O.A.K.,
> which was the temporary name that we used since "Oak" was taken and
> couldn't be used publicly. That's one of the causes of why some people
> think that Oak stood for Object Application Kernel or whatever.
> So we had the meeting. This guy named Jeff Berner was hired to moderate
> the meeting and keep it interesting, which he certainly did! It came
> down to Silk or Java, and Java won out. James Gosling seemed to favor
> Java over Silk. Kim Polese had the final say over the name, since she
> was the product manager. But most decisions back then were done by
> everyone kind of agreeing, and then someone would just say, "OK, this is
> what we're doing."
> Chris Warth's remarks to JavaWorld
> JavaWorld: We're trying to nail down the details of Java's naming. There
> are all kinds of stories floating around. Were you at the naming
> meetings? If so, what's the real story, in your opinion?
> Warth: Yes, I was at many if not all the naming meetings. In any case I
> was certainly at the one where "Java" was voted onto a very short
> list. Some other candidates were "WebDancer" and "WebSpinner"
> (retch!). I was just going over the naming issue with a friend who has
> started his own company. We were noticing that, in retrospect, although
> [Sun's] marketing wanted a name that implied an association with the Web
> or the Net, we did very well to pick a name that is not associated with
> either one. Java is likely to find a true home in applications far from
> the Internet, so it is best that it wasn't pigeonholed early. A
> side-benefit is that the name "Java" has so many cliched associations to
> choose from -- Espresso, Cafe, Latte. We opened up a whole new naming
> horizon just when "Web" and "Net" were getting exhausted.
> Java was actually the third name for the language. When we were working
> on the Green project, James first called it "Greentalk" and the file
> extension was ".gt". Then it became "Oak" for several years and only
> relatively recently was it called "Java," because Oak was already
> trademarked in the computer field.
> JW: Arthur van Hoff says that you first suggested the name "Java" at the
> brainstorming meeting. True?
> Warth: I don't claim to be the one who first suggested the name. It
> definitely was Peet's coffee. But it might have been me or James or Mark
> Opperman, or even someone else. I don't actually remember. It really
> doesn't matter who came up with the name first, because it was in a
> brainstorming session, and a lot of names were being thrown out as
> possible candidates.
> I do seem to recall that Kim was lukewarm on the name Java. At the time
> we were also trying to rename our browser from WebRunner to something
> that wasn't already trademarked -- by my recollection by Taligent. Kim
> wanted things like WebSpinner or even WebDancer, something that would
> make it clear that this was a World Wide Web product. We would then have
> been left with the problem of naming the language, and all the good
> names were taken. So when Java was suggested, it was also suggested that
> we name our browser "HotJava."
> The trademark search was done, and after several weeks a short list of
> cleared names came back. At the time Kim wanted us to hold up the
> release so we could find a better name than Java, but she was overruled
> by the engineers, especially James and Arthur and myself, and we just
> did a very quick set of renames in the source code and put the release
> out.
> The feeling amongst myself and James and the other engineers was that we
> could call it "xyzzy" and it would still be popular, the branding would
> take care of itself. In the end, I think the marketeers and vice
> presidents had far less to say about the name than the engineers who
> were dying to get something out the door.
> In the end, it doesn't matter who originally suggested the name because
> the decision was ultimately a group decision -- perhaps helped along by
> a handful of people who decided just to go for it late one night. I
> think Kim is rewriting history a bit when she suggests that she picked
> this name for some savvy marketing reason. Maybe that is true, because I
> wasn't in on the marketing meetings with Eric Schmidt et al. But I feel
> like we ended up with this name because we ran out of options and we
> wanted to get our product out. The marketing justifications came later.
> James Gosling's remarks to JavaWorld
> JavaWorld: Would you be kind enough to give us a quote on your
> recollection of how "Java" was chosen? Do you recall who first suggested
> the name? When? Where?
> Gosling: The name "Java" originated in a meeting where about a dozen
> people got together to brainstorm. There was an outside consultant
> (whose name I forget) who was the meeting facilitator. The meeting was
> arranged by Kim Polese. Fundamentally, the meeting was continuous wild
> craziness. Lots of people yelled out words. Who yelled out what first is
> unknowable and unimportant. It felt like most of the words in the
> dictionary were yelled out at some time or another. There was a lot of
> "I like this because..." and "I don't like that because..." And in the
> end we whittled it down to a list of about a dozen names.
> We handed it off to the trademark lawyers and let them pick the one
> nearest the top of the list that passed the trademark-ability
> criteria. Java was about the third or fourth name on the list.
> Timothy Lindholm's remarks to JavaWorld
> JavaWorld: We are wondering whether you could give us a quote on your
> recollections of the meeting at which Java was named. Also, would you be
> kind enough to tell us what the initial feedback was to the name at Sun,
> such as, "Who gave the final OK to the name?" We'd like to write a
> definitive account of something that a lot of folks have been wondering
> about.
> Lindholm: The LiveOak Project had problems with a name, as "Oak" was
> clearly taken. We were really disgusted and tired from all the marathon
> hacking we'd been doing, and we still hadn't found a name that we could
> stand and that we could get through trademark search. There had been
> literally hundreds of names e-mailed around, and I had been keeping
> records of all of them. (This isn't the first time I've regretted
> deleting those records -- I wonder if I could still get them from
> backups?) We were pressed for time, as adopting a new name meant a lot
> of work, and we had releases coming up. I think that we had just put out
> a semi-public release calling the language O.A.K., standing for Object
> Application Kernel or some hack like that so we could say that the
> language was not "Oak" but we didn't have to change our sources. We knew
> we couldn't keep that up though.
> So we set up a meeting for whoever cared to come, where the intent of
> the meeting was to thrash out a list of 10 names that we could stand and
> that weren't obviously taken, in the hope that about three of them would
> pass trademark search.
> The meeting went on for quite a while and I remember that there wasn't
> anything that jumped out as obviously the right thing to do. We were
> talking in despair about dumb names like "Rover." We ended up with our
> list, and Java was one of the top choices, along with Silk, as in what
> you spin webs with. I don't remember there being a particular champion
> of "Java," but some people thought it was better than some of the other
> choices. I think that we were concerned about "Silk's" availability.
> Some more context: The trademark office was running with a three-month
> backlog at the time, during which time trademark searches wouldn't show
> names that were ahead of you in the queue. We were already getting ready
> to go public, and knew of at least Oak Technologies (I think they make
> graphics boards) that precluded our use of "Oak." We absolutely didn't
> want to choose anything here that we couldn't be reasonably confident
> that we'd be able to keep. We also would need to convert our sources and
> docs over to the new name, and we didn't want to do that twice.
> So we submitted these 10 or so names for preliminary search, and of our
> top few favorites Java came back as being the least likely to provide a
> conflict. I think that Silk was a "maybe," but it looked a little scary
> to a project of our size at that time. I don't remember exactly how the
> final decision was handled; but I recall that it was primarily driven by
> the probability of getting the name, and not so much because we thought
> that one name was clearly superior, regardless of the trademark office.
> The name "HotJava," by the way, was a little more contentious. I think
> it was chosen in part as a suck-up to "HotWired," which some of the team
> admired and some did not. Ironically, "HotWired" got rather peeved at
> what they perceived as us ripping off their naming convention. But again
> we were worried about getting a new name, and under the assumption that
> we had Java, we felt pretty confident that we could get "XXXJava."
> There does not seem to be much agreement over who originally suggested
> the name "Java." Of the people of the original group that I have talked
> to about this, most deny any memory of "Java" being anything but
> something that bubbled out of the group dynamic. (I think that this is
> the best way to look at a lot of what happened during that time, despite
> the hero-making that has gone on in the press.) I do know of one person
> who claims to know that one long-departed person, who never became a
> part of the known Java team, first suggested the name. When I passed on
> that claim to the old farts at JavaSoft, another person still at
> JavaSoft but not in the press claimed that he suggested it.
> We are a group that does remember our history when it is crisply defined
> -- for instance, I can tell you with 100 percent confidence who named
> "Jeeves." I think that the extent to which the people involved have
> considered the history of Java's name without arriving at any generally
> agreed-upon resolution shows that the naming of Java was not done by
> some creative hero, but was a by-product of a creative and driven group
> trying very hard to achieve their goals, of which this name was a
> part. Thus I would encourage you not to strive beyond what is reasonable
> to ascribe the naming of Java to an individual. That is simply not the
> way things worked in those days. Don't be fooled by how individuals and
> the media have subsequently filtered many elements of Java's creation to
> their own ends.
> Arthur van Hoff's remarks to JavaWorld
> JavaWorld: What is your recollection of the meeting in which the word
> "Java" was chosen as the name of Sun's new programming environment?
> Where was it held and when?
> van Hoff: We had several meetings in early 1995. I'm not sure about the
> exact dates. The meetings were held at the PAL02 building in downtown
> Palo Alto, where the Java group was located at the time. The language
> was then called Oak, the browser was called WebRunner, and the project
> was called LiveOak.
> JW: Who first suggested the name? What was the initial reaction?
> van Hoff: I believe the name was first suggest by Chris Warth, one of
> the engineers in the project. We had been in the meeting for hours and,
> while he was drinking a cup of Peet's Java, he picked "Java" as an
> example of another name that would never work. The initial reaction was
> mixed.
> JW: What other names were considered? Why were they rejected in favor of
> Java?
> van Hoff: I believe the final candidates were Silk, DNA, and Java. I
> suggested "Lingua Java," but that didn't make it.
> JW: How was the final decision made? Who gave the final OK?
> van Hoff: We could not trademark the other names, so Java ended up being
> the name of choice. Our marketing person, Kim Polese, finally decided to
> go ahead with Java.
> Eric Schmidt's remarks to JavaWorld
> JavaWorld: We are wondering whether you could give us a quote on your
> recollection of how Java was named. What was the initial feedback to the
> name at Sun? We'd like to write a definitive account of something that a lot
> of folks have been wondering about.
> Schmidt: I was not present for the informal discussions they all had. But I
> can tell you precisely about the decision to choose the name. We met in
> early 1995 in 100 Hamilton in one of our standard "operating reviews" for
> little businesses like Java. Kim presented that 1) we had to choose a name
> now, and 2) Oak (which we were all used to) was taken. As I recall she
> proposed two names: Java and Silk. Bert Sutherland was the manager at the
> time -- he worked for me -- and Kim and a few others including James were
> there. Of the two, she strongly preferred Java and represented that the team
> was in agreement. Bert and I decided to approve her recommendation and the
> decision was made. For those reasons I believe it is correct to give Kim the
> credit for the name. She presented it and sold it, and then made it happen
> in marketing.


The so-called lessons of history are for the most part the
rationalizations of the victors. History is written by the survivors.
-- Max Lerner