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Poll Result: OpenJDK, GlassFish Considered the Most Important Projects

Posted by editor on January 29, 2010 at 12:54 PM PST

This past week's poll indicates that two of the biggest projects, OpenJDK and GlassFish, are considered most important among all projects, as we head into the future. A total of 416 votes were cast. The exact question and results were:

What's the most important project going forward?

  • 29% (119 votes) - GlassFish
  • 8% (34 votes) - Hudson
  • 0% (2 votes) - OpenDS
  • 2% (9 votes) - OpenSSO
  • 51% (211 votes) - OpenJDK
  • 2% (10 votes) - Other
  • 7% (31 votes) - I don't know

There were two comments posted to the poll. When I saw the first comment, "Unfair Poll", which was posted by suhail, I wondered if the poll was in some way offensive, and if I should close it. Here's suhail's comment:

I think this poll is quite unfair. Because I actively use first five of the choices in various projects and each of them have their own community if you follow the mailing list. Since their in zero overlap between the choices, in essence what you are doing is performing a poll on the developers involved. And i find it quite hard to believe that you didn't already know that the JDK project would be your number one project

After reading this comment many times, and thinking about it, I decided it was OK to let the poll continue. I don't think that the only people who vote in a poll like this are necessarily participants in one or more of the project communities. So, I don't think that the vote totals for each project will be directly correlated with the number of developers who work on each project (if that's what suhail was implying). One can be an avid user of Hudson and think it is a great tool, and not use GlassFish at all -- but still think GlassFish is overall a more important project going forward.

I, like suhail, guessed that OpenJDK would probably win the most votes. However, I don't know that I would have selected OpenJDK myself, had I voted. Java is a quite mature language, with an enormous installed base. In terms of importance for the future, how much of a difference will the next set of JDK enhancements make for Java developers? Are the changes that are being worked on for the Java language itself likely to be more world-changing in the next five years than the emergence of GlassFish as both the Java EE 6 reference implementation and the Oracle-supported application server for smaller installations? And what about Hudson? Might it become the focus point for a revolution in software engineering, and beyond that, diversified process automation and control (for example, Hudson can monitor cron jobs)?

In the other comment, nathanlee asked "Netbeans?" and said "Anything and everything netbeans is my vote.. Then glassfish." Well, I certainly agree that NetBeans is an important project, and, as with GlassFish, Oracle has stated that NetBeans will continue to be supported (as a lightweight IDE with a focus on Java EE, Java ME, scripting, and mobile development). However, the NetBeans project is not hosted on (though we do have a NetBeans Community). So, that's why NetBeans wasn't one of the poll options.

By the way, every project in the poll has been cited by Oracle for continued support going forward. So, you could say that Oracle has "voted" for all the poll options.

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