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back to article Sun's open sourcing of Java: avoid the red herring

The other day I attended a briefing with Simon Phipps, Sun's chief open source officer which was ostensibly aimed at updating the assembled on Sun's progress in its open sourcing of Java. The "big news" was that Sun now plans to bring its reference implementations of the mobile "editions" of Java (Java ME CDC and CLDC) to …

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Snooze fest...

Sorry to say it, but again the author is pointing out the obvious. Open Sourcing the java language does nothing in terms of technical achievement, other than buying Sun some PR.

As the author correctly points out, business users will standardize on known distributions and JVMs. (Sun or IBM) for example.

What this really does is to give Sun some PR and some "street cred" as being part of the Opensource community.

In terms of control or influence, it does very little.

Its a well written article, yet it states the obvious and doesn't answer the question of how a company will make money in an open source market place.

Note that there will be those to shoot from the hip and cry "services", but then again, the majority of them haven't tried to run either a services group or company... ;-)

Its a strange, dangerous world that we live in these days.

But hey! What do I know? ;-)

-G

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Boring skepticism?

The Register often presents a pessimistic/realistic view of positive-sounding industry announcements, but it's a bit of a tragedy when they try so desperately to pick holes in something such as this.

So Sun are repositioning Java by giving it away and making money from charging for services down the line? Stop the presses. Does this sound _any_ different to how it has used Java to date? The fact that it's open source doesn't change this one bit.

What it does mean is that a load more coders can take a look at the source code, and have a good deal more input in tightening it up. _That_ is the benefit for Java developers, whether or not they realise it's from open sourcing.

"'Most people don't know or care about how Java is made...so for most people it [Sun's involvement in open-sourcing Java] will have a negligible effect.'

Exactly."

Exactly? Is this some deeply subtle irony? Allowing coders to improve the source code will have little effect on most Java users, because they won't realise it was the open sourcing that made the improvements? Is this some sort of bizarre marketing mindset, whereby things only help you if you have seen enough advertising to know what caused them? And if that weren't an odd enough claim, the rest of the article hinges on the exact opposite: on the idea that Sun did it go gain kudos because people _will_ know about the open sourcing.

Come on. Please get some decent reporting on this. Sun have clearly mostly made a PR move, but the salient points of the article could have been written in about two sentences. As the previous commenter so ably modelled for us.

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