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Poll Result: Open Source Tools Very Prevalent in Developer Workplaces

Posted by editor on July 24, 2009 at 7:12 AM PDT

The results of this past week's java.net poll were both not surprising and highly surprising to me. I expected to find that most developers use open source tools in their daily work, but I did not expect the prevalence of open source to be as complete as the poll results suggest.

A total of 440 votes were cast. Here's the actual question, and the results:

Do you use open source software (OSS) tools in your daily work?

  • 25.2% (111 votes) - OSS is integrated into the products I work on
  • 14.3% (63 votes) - I use OSS developer tools
  • 0.9% (4 votes) - I use OSS office tools
  • 0.0% (0 votes) - I use other OSS
  • 56.5% (249 votes) - Multiple of the above
  • 2.7% (12 votes) - No, I don't use OSS in my daily work
  • 0.2% (1 vote) - Other

What didn't surprise me is that a lot of developers use open source tools. What did surprise me was that less than 3% of people said they don't use open source software tools in their daily work. I thought that surely there are lots of companies that require developers to use commercial tools for everything. The tally in this poll suggests that that's not the case. (Of course, this is not a scientific poll.)

So, 97% of people are using open source software in their daily work, with the majority using multiple types of OSS. A tiny fraction uses only OSS office tools. And about 1/7th use open source developer tools, but no other open source software in their daily work. Everyone who uses open source tools at work uses either OSS developer tools or OSS office tools, or OSS is integrated into the products they work on (there were 0 votes for "I use other OSS").

I had a hard time framing the first response, "OSS is integrated into the products I work on." I didn't want Java itself to be included in that category, but it's possible that that wasn't clear. I mean, Java itself is open source. I was hoping people would view that response as meaning open source packages are integrated into the products they work on. Ah, yes! After the poll is closed I think of a better way to frame the response. Convenient!

Anyway -- that 97% of developers are using open source in their daily work speaks volumes about the success of open source. Who (among those old enough to remember software development in, say, the 1980s) would ever have thought free software developed significantly through unpaid contributions of time and effort by developers would come to fully saturate the professional software engineering work environment?

New poll: JDK 7

The new poll asks "What's your view of the emerging JDK 7?" Think it's great? OK? Typical? Useless? Cast your vote! Voting will remain open through next Thursday.


In Java Today, Sahoo announces the OSGi Declarative Service bundle in GlassFish: "Starting with build #56, GlassFish v3 now comes pre-installed with Apache Felix Service Component Runtime, which is an implementation of OSGi Declarative Service Specification. This bundle is located in modules/ directory and is started automatically when server starts. "

Ed Ort has written New JDK 7 Feature: Support for Dynamically Typed Languages in the Java Virtual Machine: "This article describes a new feature provided in JDK 7: support for dynamically typed languages in the Java virtual machine (JVM). This feature, which implements JSR 292: Supporting Dynamically Typed Languages on the Java Platform, is the logical follow-on to JSR 223: Scripting for the Java Platform. Support for JSR 223 was provided as part of Java SE 6 and implemented in JDK 6..."

And Jean-Francois Arcand announces Atmosphere 0.3 Released: "Atmosphere 0.3 released with support for Scala, Clustering, Injections, Grails Support, Cometd/Bayeux Protocol, many performance improvements, and many new extension points!! ..."d otherwise, add an annotation to a property and hop it's validated..."


In today's Weblogs, Varun Nischal writes about Wiki to XML using Ant: "I have written my first-ever Ant task that could simplify the task of converting WikiCreole Markup to XML format. This conversion was made possible due to the efforts of Martin Junghans and Dirk Riehle. Refer blog for more details.."

Kumar Jayanti describes MTOM threshold for Secure WebServices: "Setting MTOM threshold for Secure WebServices"

And Fabrizio Giudici asks Do you complain Sun is not open enough? Have a look to NetDEV for NetBeans: "I seldom post just to link to others' posts without further comments, but this is a very important step forward for the NetBeans Community. Have a look at Toni's post for learning about NetDEV."


In the Forums, elaltaico wonders how to make color stable on lwuit: "Hello. I have several buttons at my forms. These colors are red. When I click red button it turns to white color then it can go to next page successfully. It works very well but I do not want my button to change its colour to white when I clicked it. I used Resource Editor to give colors to my buttons, labels, textfilds. Could you please tell me a way not to chaneg my button's color when someone clicks it? ..."

judys has an issue involving JSF2: MethodExpression attribute doesn't get set: "I'm converting a couple of components and their demo programs from 1.2 to 2.0. The components have an attribute whose value is a MethodExpression: In JSF2 I'm finding that the value gets set as a ValueExpression in the attributes map rather than setting the component's configuration property as a MethodExpression. Workarounds would be to extract the String value from the ValueExpression, or define a new attribute that takes a String value "handler.configure" (as I did) and build a MethodExpression from it. But..."

And pkotla asks about How to refresh the cache using glashfish server: "Hi Guys, I have an application with two layers, front end – JSF and business layer is in JCAPS (web services). My front end application is deployed on Glassfish server. My problem is that I have some of the master data stored in cache at application scope which I want to refresh periodically. This can be done programmatically but it has a few performance drawbacks given in the current scenario. Also when doing it programmatically it would require a user action to trigger the refreshing event. Can this be done in some other way..."


The current Spotlight is Chris Hegarty's "Stream Control Transport Protocol (SCTP) in Java": "Providing support for Stream Control Transport Protocol (SCTP) in Java has been approved as one of the JDK 7 features. The work of defining the API and reference implementation was done through the sctp openjdk project. This work was integrated into JDK 7 Milestone 3 and is available in all future promotions..."


This week's java.net Poll asks "Do you use open source software (OSS) tools in your daily work?". Today (Thursday) is the last full day of voting.


Our Feature Articles include an article by Jeff Friesen, Introducting Custom Cursors to JavaFX. In this article, Jeff shows developers how to leverage undocumented JavaFX capabilities to support custom cursors in versions 1.2 and 1.1.1. Meanwhile, Francesco Azzola's Integrating JavaFX with JavaEE Using Spring and Hessian Protocol shows how a JavaFX client can call remote JavaEE services using the Spring framework and the Hessian protocol.


The latest Java Mobility Podcast is Java Mobility Podcast 82: M3DD/LA: a conversation with the organizers of Mobile, Media, and eMbedded Developer Days/Latin America in Goiania, Brazil.

The latest OpenJDK Podcast is

The latest JavaOne Community Corner Podcast is


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The results of this past week's java.net poll were both not surprising and highly surprising to me...