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Sun Releases First GPLed Java Source 206

An anonymous reader writes "You can now get GPLed JVM sources from Sun. Everyone seemed to be expecting the desktop version (J2SE) but J2ME has been released first. It looks to be buildable for Linux x86, MIPS, and ARM platforms. Sun now calls it 'phoneME.' Enjoy."
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Sun Releases First GPLed Java Source

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  • by IversenX ( 713302 ) on Friday December 22, 2006 @08:02AM (#17335714) Homepage
    You are really, really, really comparing apples to oranges here.

    Mono is comparable, yes.

    However, Qt, GTK and wxWidgets are all just GUI toolkits! You still need a programming
    language (Pascal, C++, Perl, even Java(!)) to use these. Installation will be easier,
    though. I'm personally looking forward to "apt-get install sun-java" or somesuch.

    Also, it will soon (when J2SE comes out) be possible to write better integration with existing
    apps, such as better (faster, more modern) browser applet plugins. That, I'm looking
    forward to.

    (Oh, and now that the sources aer GPLed, it should be really easy to make this thing run on *BSD if it doesn't already)
  • by Richard_at_work ( 517087 ) <{richardprice} {at} {}> on Friday December 22, 2006 @08:10AM (#17335756)
    Hint: the rest of the world doesnt go on EST. Its not 7am where I am, its halfway through the working day for me - try to think outside your own country, Java usage isnt limited to the US.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Friday December 22, 2006 @08:11AM (#17335762)
    Neither J2SE or J2EE is very strong anymore. Both for desktop apps and for server apps there are many more better alternatives than Java. However, J2ME more or less has a monopoly on embedded devices. You HAVE to use Java if you want to make applications for mobile phones. Making J2ME free software ensures that the situation will stay that way. It also means that all other J2ME JVM implementations except for Sun's one becomes irrelevant. In this move, they have both killed off all Java competitors and ensured that Java will stay relevant for many years (decades?) to come.
  • by brunes69 ( 86786 ) <> on Friday December 22, 2006 @08:14AM (#17335782) Homepage
    While I applaud the Mono team for all their hard work, it is not comparable to Java. Hell, Microsoft's .Net is not comparable to Java yet. With Java, you have a 10+ year old tried-and-true platform. You have 10+ years worth of class libraries written, most Open Source, that eliminate 50%-75% of your workload when writing any application..

    Sure, .Net does some things better than Java, like Windowing. But Mono's Windows.Forms is brand new and hardly what I could call enterprise-ready.
  • by DjReagan ( 143826 ) on Friday December 22, 2006 @08:41AM (#17335914)
    And here was me thinking that the domain name would be more relevant to where the server was hosted/run rather than where its users came from.
  • by tygerstripes ( 832644 ) on Friday December 22, 2006 @08:50AM (#17335960)
    Just wanted to say "hear hear". It took 20 posts before somebody actually had the decency to say Thank-you-this-is-a-good-thing, most of those 20 straying into completely niche related topics. I'm not saying they weren't all relevant or interesting points, but thanks for actually saying thanks.

    As far as I'm concerned: the short-term impact of this will be decent as people start getting their teeth into the source (as they have done since November), but the long-term impact will be fucking huge. I don't have a lot of personal experience, but this announcement combined with the fact that so many CS degrees start with OOP by teaching in Java means that people will routinely be encouraged to appreciate the power of FOSS from the start, before they get used to the limitations that its absence imposes.

    To reiterate: This-Is-A-Good-Thing.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Friday December 22, 2006 @09:00AM (#17336014)

    Sun, you're a bit late.
    Fanboys will always be fanboys. Why don't you just say "I like .Net better and that's why I am trying to scare everyone away from Java, so I have a chance"?

    Sun did what nobody expected, opensourced its greatest (both in terms of size and of completeness) and industry leading development platform. Now productivity at the grasp of even the most rabid opensource zealot.

    Now what? You are going to tell it's "too late"? I will tell you what is going to happen, Mono has just lost any reason to exist and to be used. It will always be an outdated and slow piece of software, always playing catch up with the latest features of .Net and always "almost compatible" with the Windows version.
  • by jimstapleton ( 999106 ) on Friday December 22, 2006 @09:27AM (#17336162) Journal
    Actually, I do, and I am forced to work with the steaming pile all the time, as it is deployed by many enterprises I've dealt with. Popularity can be because of a good product or good marketing - and I'd blame the latter on Java from most of the software I've dealt with made in Java, including enterprise software.

    Actually, the software I administrate is a Java application, it's probably the ONLY Java application I've dealt with that hasn't been a royal piece of shit. Most in house development stuff here seems to be .NET now.

    So, just because I'm not you, and don't agree with you, doesn't mean I don't have a clue. Get over yourself.
  • by Shaper_pmp ( 825142 ) on Friday December 22, 2006 @09:29AM (#17336176)
    "Comparable" != "identical to"

    Comparable means you can compare the two things - one might be wonderful and the other total shit, but they exist on the same spectrum.

    Apples and oranges are (canonically) not comparable because they're different fruit, so they have different criteria to be fairly judged on.

    You can compare a nice apple with, say, a shitty, maggot-ridden one - they both have the same criteria, so comparison is valid.

    So, on the basis they're both managed programming environments, both compile to bytecode, both tackle the same kinds of tasks in a similar way, you can compare Mono, .NET and Java.

    You might believe one is better than the others, but that doesn't make them incomparable.
  • by bobaferret ( 513897 ) on Friday December 22, 2006 @09:37AM (#17336228)
    The quality of the code varies from source to source. Thus making it sub par. Their documentation is okay, since it's produced from the source code and is shown to the public. Atleast on the .java source. But overall I think their code it crap, but not nearly as bad as Mozilla was. The really irritating thing with the rt.jar source code, which has always been viewable, is that they don't follow their own java formatting conventions. There's going to be a lot of available "Janitorial" positions available once all the code get realeased in March (I think they said march). The only thing that really worries me is the JCP process. Linux works well, because in has a benevolent dictator at the top. Translation, it has a vision/direction. JCP's are commitiees, and that will slow down OS/FOSS development efforts. I imagine/hope that ClassPath will stick around and add features/ be the eqivilent of a development branch. There are things I'd like to see added to that language that would never make it through a commitiee (I just can't spell that word this morning, sorry). But by having a development unstable branch, maybe some of these things can be tried out and proven in the field, then added back into the mainline trunk. The JCP seems to work well, but I'm really curious to see if it can keep up with OS development.
  • by samkass ( 174571 ) on Friday December 22, 2006 @09:39AM (#17336244) Homepage Journal
    A language and toolkit can't compensate for the people who build and maintain the software. Java is easily the best language out there for writing stable, maintainable systems if you use the right tools and know your domain. .NET isn't bad, but IMHO its one big advantage over Java-- the ease with which one can integrate "native" code-- is also a big weakness in potential stability.

  • Re:requirements: (Score:5, Insightful)

    by lisaparratt ( 752068 ) on Friday December 22, 2006 @09:48AM (#17336290)
    Welcome to the Real World of Embedded.

    Nearly everything is targetted toward Monta Vista, these days. Being fair on them, it's because they were one of the few embedded Linux distributions that managed to put together something with all the neccessary patches to be actually capable of performing well in an embedded scenario.
  • Thank you Sun (Score:5, Insightful)

    by wikinerd ( 809585 ) on Friday December 22, 2006 @10:47AM (#17336712) Journal
    I am very happy that Sun Microsystems [] open sourced its Java and OpenSolaris products. If I buy my own server hardware, I will certainly prefer Sun. Contrast this with Microsoft, which is known for its Embrace-Extend-and-Extinguish practices, its preference to its own shared source licences for the very few lines of code that they ever made public, their aggressive hiring of some open-source people (why? to silence them with dollars?), and shadowy agreements with GNU/Linux vendors. Sun initially tried to use CDDL, but now took a bold step by adopting GPL and releasing actual, useful, working code under it. This means that Sun has open-minded people in its management.
  • by jimfrost ( 58153 ) * <> on Friday December 22, 2006 @11:05AM (#17336868) Homepage
    Frankly speaking, .NET is a Java fork. Right down to the bytecode and up through the class libraries. If you are familiar with JDK 1.1 class libraries you'll find practically everything in them in .NET, usually with only package name and method capitalization changes. .NET added a lot, particularly in terms of XML, SOAP, HTTP, and GUI support, and fixed some seriously stupid stuff in Java like classloaders, but it really is a fork.

    It's kind of amusing, when you think about it, that what Sun really got out of their lawsuit against Microsoft for their (really, really minor, especially relative to stuff like what Netscape did) modifications to Java was a pure competitor in .NET.

    You mention .NET's ability to easily (I'd say "relatively easily") link to native code as a big detriment, but in many .NET implementations that's not used at all. It's easier to work with disparate code like that through a SOAP or database interface. In practice you see a lot of .NET front-ends to traditional servers via a SOAP integration. You see less of it used as a replacement for traditional MFC code, the kind of thing where such integration would be most useful.

    But getting back to the enterprise, .NET's largest problem in terms of enterprise software is not that it's less mature than Java (in many ways I'd say that Microsoft took the good stuff from Java and improved it a lot) but rather that it's locked to Windows. Maybe you haven't noticed, but Windows is not a very good server operating system -- not very reliable, not very fast (except in very specialized situations), certainly not scalable. It's all very well and good that you can drop a couple of hundred boxes in there to scale to huge applications, but when you could run the same application on a single Sun you're really not making a cost-effective choice. (I wish I were making that up, but it is actually pretty typical to be able to replace as many as 100 Windows servers with a midsize Sun or two, and that is true not only of stuff like IIS/ASPX versus Apache/whatever that are differentiated by more than OS but also for directly comparable stuff like databases and ETL). Push Windows hard and it will break, often. It's nuts to put it in critical places (although that is done, a LOT, and people pay the price in ongoing maintenance).

    Having said that, .NET is probably the single best GUI implementation framework I've seen yet (although that may be damning it with faint praise), and Windows, at least aside from the malware issue, is a pretty fine desktop. In that domain it shows what Java could have been if Sun had been even remotely competent (rather than giving us stuff like AWT and the Swing abomination). We're going to see a lot of .NET on the desktop because it is pretty much best-of-breed. More power to it.

    Java is today, and has been since at least the late '90s, often used in enterprise situations. Whether or not it's appropriate in a lot of those situations is debatable, but it is deeply integrated into the core operations of a lot of companies at this point. Personally I feel that JMS is not very good at its job and J2EE as a whole is a steaming pile of dung designed by people who wouldn't know a good application architecture if it ran over their foot, but Java as a whole and these things in particular are out there and being used by a lot of people -- and at least in some cases doing a good job.

    It is certainly possible to build robust, reasonably efficient large-scale Java applications. It is even easier to do that in Java than it is in C++, especially if you avoid some of the more ridiculous parts of J2EE. But that doesn't mean it's easy to build that kind of thing, and as you might expect there are a large number of really awful Java applications out there (just as the majority of large applications built on all the other languages out

  • by jZnat ( 793348 ) * on Friday December 22, 2006 @12:26PM (#17338070) Homepage Journal
    Mono would lose its necessity iff Microsoft were to release the entirety of .Net under the GPL (or LGPL, or another OSI-approved license perhaps) and donated all its related patents either to the public domain or to some other open patent initiative. Since I don't see that happening, uh, ever, we can rest assured that Mono will continue to be relevant as long as .Net is relevant as well.
  • by fm6 ( 162816 ) on Friday December 22, 2006 @02:58PM (#17340632) Homepage Journal
    Where's the love for FreeBSD, OpenBSD, and NetBSD? :)
    The same place as the Amiga support! ;)
    This is nothing more than Sun trying to ensure that Java stays relevant, with the greatest stability of other toolkits
    I don't think anybody at Sun would deny this. But so what? Enlightened self-interest [] is nothing to sneer at.

The Macintosh is Xerox technology at its best.