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Poll Result: Mixed Views on Whether Oracle Is Good for Java

Posted by editor on October 23, 2009 at 8:30 AM PDT

The results of this past weeks poll reflect the uncertainty of the Java community regarding the impact of Oracle's acquisition of Sun. The poll drew a total of 394 votes. The exact question and results were as follows:

Is Oracle good for Java?

  • 21% (81 votes) - Yes, Oracle recognizes Java's importance
  • 22% (88 votes) - Probably, but it will require adaptation by Oracle
  • 32% (126 votes) - I have my doubts
  • 9% (36 votes) - No, Oracle doesn't understand Java
  • 15% (60 votes) - I don't know
  • 1% (3 votes) - Other

As usual, I'll state the caveat that this is not a scientific poll, the results should not be assumed to be a completely accurate representation of the actual distribution of differing views within the entire population of Java users, the margin of error for any given response option is at least 100%, etc.

To me, the most interesting number is the low value for the most negative response ("No, Oracle doesn't understand Java"). This says to me that people are definitely keeping an open mind about the impact of the acquisition on Java's future.

A couple days ago, I published a little item, Does Java Speak for Itself?, keying off another phrase that was stated at Oracle OpenWorld, and inviting comments from people. There, I quoted two large blogs that represented opposing views on the impact of the acquistion on Java, Bert Ertman's Impressions from Oracle OpenWorld: "Is Oracle good for Java?" and Abdelmonaim Renami's Oracle/Sun Merger: A Community Perspective. Bert is more of the view that Oracle really doesn't "get it" when it comes to Java, they view it as a "product". Meanwhile, Abdelmonaim thinks Java is already beyond a single company's control, it already has a life of its own that's bigger than anything that could result from the Oracle acquisition of Sun.

It seems to me that our poll result suggests that, while there is some doubt on whether Oracle will actually be a boon to Java, not that many people expect a strongly negative outcome due to the acquisition. In fact, 43% expect a positive outcome, ultimately.

The greater mystery, in my view, is what will happen with respect to the many open source projects that apply Java technology that receive extensive support from Sun. I mean projects like GlassFish, for example. Is Oracle going to demand cuts in those budget items?

New poll: IntelliJ IDEA Community Edition

A few weeks ago, I was surprised by the very strong response of IntelliJ IDEA users to the fact that I did not explicitly include an Intellij IDEA option in the Which IDE do you use? poll. I explicitly named only NetBeans and Eclipse, and that was considered a major slight to IntelliJ IDEA. Now that IntelliJ has released the free and open source IntelliJ IDEA Community Edition, I realize that part of the reason why I didn't have an IntelliJ IDEA option in the poll was that at that time IntelliJ IDEA was entirely a commercial product. By nature, I tend to focus on open source, and so, the drawback that IntelliJ IDEA was not free and open source influenced my creation of the poll options.

But now the free and open source IntelliJ IDEA Community Edition exists. As IntelliJ says, "we decided to remove the main barrier -- the price tag." Good move, IMO!

So, the new poll asks Do you plan to use the new IntelliJ IDEA Community Edition? Voting will run through next Thursday.

In Java Today, Janice Heiss told me about A Java Developer's Quiz: Part Three. The quiz "invites Java developers to test their knowledge and get an update on recent developments in Java technology." The quiz consists of eleven quite challenging questions. You'll have a better chance at doing well if you've been following the latest Java developments and the commentary that those developments have provoked from prominent people in the Java community.I took the quiz myself. On one of the questions where I guessed, I was quite surprised to find out the correct answer. I don't know what a passing grade is, but maybe I passed!

The Java ME SDK Team Blog repors that Early Access for Mac OS is ready:

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In today's Weblogs, Terrence Barr sees the MySQL discussion heating up:

After the open letter by former MySQL CEO Mårten Mickos a few days ago additional groups are now throwing their hat in the ring. Richard Stallman, together with Knowledge Ecology International and the Open Rights Group published an open letter of their own asking the EU to block the acquisition of MySQL by Oracle...

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Lazy loaded relations often cannot be transferred and serialized to the client. Even in case the serialization were successful, they cannot be accessed from the client for sure. They have to be loaded before leaving the remote-boundary. Either the server has to know in advance which references are interesting to the client, or the client has to communicate it somehow...

Geertjan has discovered Urban Surveillance Research on the NetBeans Platform:

Yet another NetBeans Platform application is part of the Centibots project. This project, a.k.a. the "100 Robots Project", funded by the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA), is aimed at developing new technology to support the coordinated deployment of as many as 100 robots for missions such as urban surveillance. And guess what? They used the NetBeans Platform: "For the GUI we chose the NetBeans Platform. NetBeans provides us with a plug and play IDE with services common to almost all desktop applications – windows, menus, settings management and storage, file access and more." ...

In the Forums, jrscott has an issue involving Disk Space: "I have been running User Preview 1 for a few weeks now and was just about to upgrade to User Preview 2. I tried to make a backup copy of the .wonderland-server directory as suggested and found that I ran out of disk space when I tried. On..."

mtarullo has problems Subclassing Shape3D and Primitive: "OK so I'm just getting started learning Java 3D programming. I'm working my way through the tutorial and I want to try a few things on my own. I'm trying to create a 3D Octagon class derived from Primitive. If I..."

And Gerh17 Cannot write BIGINT to MySql database: "I have created a database wsdl, based on a MySql database. Using the insert method, everything is OK ... but only the BIGINT column never is written. The wizard has created an xsd:long data type, but changing this to xsd:int or..."

Our current Spotlight is Interview: André van Kouwen and the GMVC Project: editor Kevin Farnham has published a new article, "Interview: André van Kouwen and the GMVC Project". André recently founded a new project, GMVC (see also the Swing's Generic MVC interface page). In the interview, André talked about why he started the project, the project's long-term objectives, and more.

The new Poll asks Do you plan to use the new IntelliJ IDEA Community Edition? The poll will run through next Thursday.

Our current "(Not So) Stupid Questions" topic for discussion is Does Java Speak for Itself? It was suggested at Oracle OpenWorld that Java indeed does speak for itself. But, what does that statement mean? Does it have any truth? Register your view by posting a comment.

Our Feature Articles include Manish K. Maheshwari's Sweeping the File System with NIO-2, which describes how JSR 203 (NIO-2), which is being implemented in the OpenJDK project, is shaping the future of I/O in the upcoming JDK 7. We're also featuring John Ferguson Smart's article Working with Maven in NetBeans 6.7.1, which shows why, if you are a NetBeans user working with Maven, you're in luck with NetBeans 6.7.1.

The latest Java Mobility Podcast is Java Mobile Podcast 90: Augmented Reality: Excerpts from the JavaOne 2009 Augmented Reality session with Kenneth Andersson and Erik Hellman of Sony Ericsson.

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