The Linux Java community
Before entering the subject of this post, let me introduce myself as the newest member of the group of Java.Net community leaders. I'm not here to replace Kevin in the Linux community, but to work with him in making linux.java.net the main source of information for Java developers who work on the Linux OS.
Talking a little about myself, I was a free software developer long before Linux became a mainstream OS and "Open Source Software" turned into a buzzword, but I'm also a corporate consultant, working with large Brazillian corporations and government agencies, so hopefully I can provide fresh views on many matters that are today distension points between Java and OSS developers in general.
The Linux community is a very heterogeneous bunch. Many do not view themselves as Linux users or developers, although their J2EE applications are hosted by Linux-powered servers and their embedded devices are based on the Linux kernel. Others may even say they don't care about Open Source Java at all. But their daily work is centered on Open Source tools like Ant, JUnit, Eclipse, Struts or JBoss.
Indeed, Java and Linux were the greatest changes on the IT industry during the latest decades, competing only with the Internet. Today, innovations on IT do not come mostly from big corporations anymore. They come mainly from community efforts,from the collaborative efforts of the best minds, whether they are at corporations, academia or not-for-profit organizations.
Java and Linux represent different views on how to advance the state-of-the-art in IT by bringing in the end-user. Both communities have much to learn from each other. Java and Linux have a lot more in common than recent arguments about open sourcing Java have shown; both pursue vendor-neutral standards-based software and open evolution instead of closed design groups.
In spite of Java platform independence, many important things about Java are very platform-specific: efficient JVMs and application servers, device compatibility, end-user support and desktop application deployment are some of these.
The Linux Community at Java.Net is the place where you Java developer that works on or targets Linux and other Open Source platforms like OpenBSD can find a forum to express your views about how Java could be improved. So what improvements do you think Java could have when running on Linux? And how do you think F/OSS developers and the JCP could work better together?