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The Java Open Source Platform

Posted by qmahmoud on May 8, 2007 at 11:10 AM PDT

This morning I attended the keynote speech: Get in the Driver's Seat with Java Technology by Rich Green, Executive Vice President of Software, Sun Microsystems.

John Gage, Chief Scientist, (the master of ceremony if you like) opened the session by welcoming everyone to the event and talked about Java in devices, which are beginning to multiply. To move this forward, there is a need to reduce the cost by opening every component of Java technology. So the session was really about open source Java, devices, and the next wave of tools.

Rich Green talked about community as a fundamental human property, and how barriers to community are falling. He encouraged the audience (thousands of developers -- over 14,000 are attending JavaOne this year) to think of technology as a catalyst, and how to further the network as an unstoppable social force. He presented some interesting numbers:

  • Mobile devices out ship PCs 20 to 1
  • There are over 6 million Java developers
  • Out of the 5.5 billion devices available worldwide, 2 billion run Java
  • GlassFish powers more business transactions around the world than any other system
  • The number of developers using NetBeans increases by 92% every year

I am not surprised by the last figure regarding NetBeans. As I mentioned in an earlier entry, NetBeans has come a long way in terms of ease of use and more importantly performance. Also, the support for Java ME is phenomenal -- the majority of Java ME developers use NetBeans!

The first Java Specification Request, JSR-1, is about Real-Time Java. Rich invited the CIO of NASDAQ (Anna Ewing) to share her thoughts on real-time Java. Their trading technology runs on Java on course. NASDAQ pioneered electronic trading 36 years ago. She also presented some numbers about trading, which there are scary to even think about. :-) Nevertheless, the number of transactions they perform per second on any given day is about 150,378. Anna talked about the importance of speed in the trading market. They are able to handle the surge of volume successfully (e.g. the Feb 27 domino effect of the sell-off on the Chinese market). On Feb 27 they handled 5 billion shares!

Finally, today marks the official completion of open source Java that Sun announced back in November 2006. A complete open source development kit is available: OpenJDK. There is more to open source than the source itself of course, and for that reason Sun is establishing an Interim Governing Board for creating constitution, and making available the certification kit (TCK) to ensure compatibility across the open source community. The license they chose was GLPv2, which is the same license used by the GNU/Linux community. Jonathan Schwartz, CEO and President of Sun, said that they have been surprised at the impact of open source Java and the license they have chosen, and developers and governments worldwide like the road Sun is taking with this as it will open more opportunities without friction with licensing. Q.

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