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Goodbye "J2SE", Hello "Java SE"

Posted by kgh on June 27, 2005 at 6:32 AM PDT

We've made some updates to the Java platform names.
Here's what has happened, and why.

What has changed?

We're modifying the names of all three Java platform editions.

First, we're dropping the "2" from the full edition names. They are now:

JavaTM Platform, Standard Edition

JavaTM Platform, Enterprise Edition

JavaTM Platform, Micro Edition

Second, we are emphasizing "Java" in the short-hand names:

J2SETM  is
now  JavaTM SE

J2EETM  is
now  JavaTM EE

J2METM  is
now  JavaTM ME

Finally, we are using single digit version numbers where possible.
So rather than saying "5.0" we will just say "5".

These names will be applied to new releases. We won't change
the names or numbers of existing releases. So Tiger will still be
"J2SE 5.0" but Mustang will be "Java SE 6".

So in the future expect to hear us talking about "Java SE 6" and "Java EE 5".

Why the change?

Well, I'm just a simple engineer and I definitely don't claim to understand
the exciting world of Naming and Branding.

However, the "2" was definitely starting to look out of place. We introduced
the "2" back in 1998, and it seemed increasingly odd to have that "2"
embedded in the platform name while also having a version number like "5.0"
at the end of the name.

We also wanted to add more emphasis on the unity of the three editions.
They are all based on "Java" and it seemed worth making that "Java"
more visible in the shorthand names.

Finally, we got feedback from developers both inside and outside of Sun
that they'd prefer to see versions like "5" rather than "5.0". That wasn't
what we had expected, but we've made that change.

We'd initially hoped to roll out the main name changes last year, for Tiger.
However, we realized that we couldn't just make the change for standard edition,
we also had to address micro edition and enterprise edition. And of course they
needed to review the changes with licensees who would be impacted. So we
decided we needed more time and Tiger stayed a "J2SE" release.

A far as I know (fingers crossed) we are finished with naming and numbering
changes and I'm not expecting any more anytime soon!

There is a full official description of the changes at:


Building and Strengthening the Java Brand

  - Graham

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