Life at Eclipse

Musings on the Eclipse Foundation, the community and the ecosystem

Open Source Java Coming Soon(er)?

This is pretty exciting news. Motorola is going to throw its resources behind ensuring that there is an Apache-licensed Java ME implementation.

And how’s this for a quote from Mark VandenBrink:

We see industry fragmentation and proprietary software models as an obstacle to unharnessing the full power of innovation in the mobile Java ecosystem. We believe developers, customers, partners and the industry at large will benefit from a new open source model…”

Coupled with Motorola’s announcements earlier this year on mobile Linux and joining Eclipse, it seems that they have really seen the open source light.

One obvious question which is not explicitly answered by the press release is whether Motorola is going to contribute directly to Apache Harmony. I certainly hope so, as that would be the most obvious way to move forward. Harmony already has a functioning community and project, and setting those up are non-trivial exercises. Like I’ve said before, “…emulating Apache would just be dumb. Don’t emulate it. If you like their approach, just open source Java at Apache.

Life in the Java world could get very exciting if we end up with a Sun-controlled Java implementation under the CDDL and a diverse community working on Harmony. Compared to where we were a year ago, that sounds like a major improvement.

Of course, since Sun has been promising to open source Java for a while, this Motorola announcement begs the question “why”? I think that the answer is pretty simple: licensing and governance matter.

Written by Mike Milinkovich

November 1, 2006 at 4:24 pm

Posted in Foundation

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