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Java Programming Microsoft Sun Microsystems

James Gosling On The Sun/Microsoft Settlement 361

Posted by timothy
from the horse's-mouth dept.
greg_barton writes "James Gosling has responded to the two previous commentaries cited on Slashdot about the Java Dilemma. Some interesting excerpts: "In Rick Ross's 'Where Is Java In This Settlement?' he worries that Sun may have sold out the Java community. We didn't. We have not sold our soul to the Dark Side." and "There's a long thread of discussion on Slashdot 'Two Takes on the Java Dilemma' that is pretty entertaining, from a wow, what are they smoking! point of view. There are voices of reason, and conspiracy nuts.""
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James Gosling On The Sun/Microsoft Settlement

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  • Re:Great! (Score:5, Informative)

    by dastrike (458983) on Tuesday April 13, 2004 @10:00PM (#8856065) Homepage

    There are Free open source implementations of Java already. Not quite up to the same level as the Sun's offerings yet, but it is difficult to hit a moving target...

  • by Karma Sucks (127136) on Tuesday April 13, 2004 @10:16PM (#8856182)
    Here's a link [sun.com] to Sun's patent grant for the full Java.

    So Java seems to be less encumbered than .Net at this point.

  • by Virtucon (127420) on Tuesday April 13, 2004 @10:32PM (#8856281)
    They make money from licensees and from the testing process. That was a big controversy with JBoss. Sun wanted money that JBoss didn't have to certify it as J2EE compliant. Therefore to brand something as a Certified compliant product it has to undergo testing with Sun's test suites. That was one of the issues in Sun's litigation (at least first trial) over the M$ implementation of Java failing the Logo certification program tests.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday April 13, 2004 @10:43PM (#8856361)
  • by LDoggg_ (659725) on Tuesday April 13, 2004 @11:12PM (#8856585) Homepage
    ouch. that was cruel, dude.

    You just got people to mod him down and you just linked back to his current post.

    I Feel kinda bad for the dude though, he made a debateably insightful post, and was able to do it as a first post because he's a subscriber.

    Bravo on your troll though.

  • by nathanh (1214) on Tuesday April 13, 2004 @11:29PM (#8856702) Homepage
    Plus with Sun you get policies that are just insane. No other word really describes the behaviour. Example: It is obviously in Sun's interest to see a JVM on as many machines as possible. Their JVM is a free download.

    Sun's JVM is a free download.

    But you can't even redistribute unmodified copies of it,

    That might be true for Sun's JVM.

    which is why no linux distro includes a JVM. To use Java under Linux requires a user to go search it out, download a non-trivial package and install it.

    You're simply wrong.

    $ apt-cache search jvm
    kaffe - A JVM to run Java bytecode
    sablevm - Free implementation of Java Virtual Machine (JVM)
    orp - Java VM and JIT from Intel Research Lab

    There are several free JVMs on Linux and they are trivial to install (apt-get install).

  • Re:mmhmm (Score:3, Informative)

    by AKAImBatman (238306) <akaimbatman@gmai[ ]om ['l.c' in gap]> on Tuesday April 13, 2004 @11:30PM (#8856707) Homepage Journal
    Ok, that's about the luniest conspiracy theory I've heard yet. If that was really Sun's intention, why go through the trouble of building a triple A+ OS? A very expensive endevour to say the least. Especially when they could have simply bought out a vendor. After all, Novell just bought SuSE, the distro JDS is based on, and IMHO [slashdot.org] one of (if not the) best Linux desktop currently on the market.

  • by voodoo1man (594237) on Wednesday April 14, 2004 @12:17AM (#8856975)
    Heehee, time to dish out some dirt!

    Some of you may know this already, but for those who don't, RMS and James Gosling had a feud in the 80s over Gosling's Emacs (which was a TECO Emacs workalike). Apparently, there were agreements between Gosling and several other developers to the effect that they could modify and redistribute the source to Gosling's Emacs. RMS decided to base the original GNU Emacs on Gosling's code. Apparently, this happened after Gosling decided to sell the rights to his Emacs clone to Unipress, and bitter legal threats ensued. This seems to have been one of the primary motivations for the GPL. I've never seen Gosling speak or write about the incident since. RMS gave a speech [gnu.org] in 1986 where he recounted the incident, and he didn't have a lot of good things to say about Gosling:

    "In the summer of that year, about two years ago now, a friend of mine told me that because of his work in early development of Gosling Emacs, he had permission from Gosling in a message he had been sent to distribute his version of that. Gosling originally had set up his Emacs and distributed it free and gotten many people to help develop it, under the expectation based on Gosling's own words in his own manual that he was going to follow the same spirit that I started with the original Emacs. Then he stabbed everyone in the back by putting copyrights on it, making people promise not to redistribute it and then selling it to a software-house. My later dealings with him personally showed that he was every bit as cowardly and despicable as you would expect from that history."

    That speech also has a few memorable quotes, and I highly recommend you read it. I haven't heard or read RMS referring to Gosling personally since, but I believe that the incident itself has been recalled by him a few times since.

    Now for my part of the disclosure: I currently attend the University of Calgary, where James Gosling is the only persona anywhere near to fame that the Computer Science department has ever produced (Theo de Raadt doesn't count, unless your definition of "produce" involves scandal and legal threats).

    The above is mostly just hearsay and speculation, and should not be taken as authoritative, except the excerpt from RMS's speech.

  • by civilizedINTENSITY (45686) on Wednesday April 14, 2004 @12:24AM (#8857029)
    "Classpath is distributed under the terms of the GNU General Public License with the following clarification and special exception. Linking this library statically or dynamically with other modules is making a combined work based on this library. Thus, the terms and conditions of the GNU General Public License cover the whole combination.

    As a special exception, the copyright holders of this library give you permission to link this library with independent modules to produce an executable, regardless of the license terms of these independent modules, and to copy and distribute the resulting executable under terms of your choice, provided that you also meet, for each linked independent module, the terms and conditions of the license of that module. An independent module is a module which is not derived from or based on this library. If you modify this library, you may extend this exception to your version of the library, but you are not obligated to do so. If you do not wish to do so, delete this exception statement from your version.


    As such, it can be used to run, create and distribute a large class of applications and applets. When GNU Classpath is used unmodified as the core class library for a virtual machine, compiler for the java languge, or for a program written in the java programming language it does not affect the licensing for distributing those programs directly."
  • OK (Score:3, Informative)

    by NZheretic (23872) on Wednesday April 14, 2004 @12:29AM (#8857066) Homepage Journal
    MCPP = Microsoft Communications Protocol Program [microsoft.com].

    From the April 2, 2004 Sun Press Releases [sun.com]

    The agreements signed today include the following elements:
    Microsoft Communications Protocol Program: Sun has agreed to sign a license for the Windows desktop operating system communications protocols under Microsoft's Communications Protocol Program, established pursuant to Microsoft's consent decree and final judgment with the U.S. Department of Justice and 18 state attorneys general.
  • The aspect of the GPL that he seems to be remarking on with his "viral infection clause" comment is that it permits you to modify and redistribute the software licensed under it, provided the new work is also licensed under the GPL.
    No, this is not what he's talking about. He's referring to the fact that if you link with a GPL'd library, even without modification, your software needs to be licensed with GPL. In this case, if Java was licensed in GPL, all software written would also have to be licensed in GPL.
  • by Ogerman (136333) on Wednesday April 14, 2004 @02:57AM (#8857739)
    In this case, if Java was licensed in GPL, all software written would also have to be licensed in GPL.

    Which is why the option of LGPL exists.. or GPL plus some extra exemptions.. or other similar licenses that force freedom of the libraries but allow linking by that which is non-free.
  • by jrumney (197329) on Wednesday April 14, 2004 @09:57AM (#8859236) Homepage
    See here [ax9.org], under the heading "The Historical Impact of the GPL", or google for Gosling RMS GPL.
  • Exactly. There are already a bunch of licenses that will make sure the source in original or modified form will stay open, but allow its use in all software. Complaining about viral characteristics of GPL immediately is little more than knee-jerk action on Gosling's part since it's one extreme of a whole spectrum of possibilities, and we, as fellow geeks, feel he should know better. It's hard to imagine that he doesn't know there are other options to open sourcing Java.

    On the other hand, it always seemed to me that it's close to impossible finding a middle ground if you want to argue with RMS, and people just don't try it anymore.

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