Java 7 and 8 JSRs approved, as well as Coin and Lambda

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News: Java 7 and 8 JSRs approved, as well as Coin and Lambda

  1. The vote is in. The JCP voted yes on the JSRs for Java 7, Java 8, Project Coin, and Project Lambda. Some posts about it: "Java SE 7/8 passed" (unhappy post from Stephen Colebourne), "JCP Approves JSRs for Java SE 7, Java SE 8, Project Coin and Lambda" (Henrik Stahl, from the JRockit team).

    Vote analysis: Java 7 and Java 8 get the most attention. The votes were identical for both, with 13 yeses and 3 nos.

    In general, the no votes (Tim Peierls, Apache, Google) had a common theme: in inability to accept Oracle's stance on the field-of-use restrictions on the JVM. Apache's refusal was the longest expanation of any of the votes, pointing out the field of use restriction, the fact that the JSR is in conflict with its own license, the spec lead ignoring requests from multiple expert group members for explanations, and that oracle is breaching its own license in providing a testing kit for Harmony.

    That last one is funny: Apache is saying "because you give us a TCK when we're in willful violation of the restrictions you put in place, you shouldn't be allowing us to participate, and you giving us a TCK is why we're voting no." It's hilarious.

    Google also had an interesting comment to round out their "no" vote, after expressing resons for the "no":

    But this concern was made moot by Oracle's statement at the JCP meeting of 10/4/2010 that they intend to move forward with the release outlined in this JSR with or without the approval of the JCP.

    A lot of the yes votes had a similar theme: "We're voting yes because of technical merits of the JSR, and we disapprove of what you're doing." These were: SAP, IBM, Eclipse, Red Hat, and Credit Suisse, and Werner Keil. 

    That means out of 15 votes, nine said "we don't like what you're doing." Of those nine, six voted yes because of technical merits but said they were unhappy. The ones who voted yes had no comment. They were Oracle, Hewlett Packard, Ericsson AB, Fujitsu Limited, VMWare, and Intel.

    Interesting: the fight goes on, even while Google puts it pretty clearly out there that the fight's meaningless, because Oracle's going to make progress with Java regardless. We're wasting energy complaining, Oracle's not listening; it doesn't matter, because it's in their best interests to do stuff that'll help us somehow anyway.

  2. I sincerely hope Apache stays in the JCP because Apache has produced so many good Java libraries and hosts so many useful projects, I believe the Java community really benefits from their idealism, ingenuity, and involvement at the executive level.

    In general, the no votes (Tim Peierls, Apache, Google) had a common theme: in inability to accept Oracle's stance on the field-of-use restrictions on the JVM. Apache's refusal was the longest expanation of any of the votes, pointing out the field of use restriction, the fact that the JSR is in conflict with its own license, the spec lead ignoring requests from multiple expert group members for explanations, and that oracle is breaching its own license in providing a testing kit for Harmony.

    I have been following the JCP political situation for some time now and I still have some basic questions.

    1) Is the real issue that Sun/Oracle would not "give" Apache a TCK license for Harmony? I do not want to be insensitive here; I realize Apache is a non-profit organization but why doesn't Apache try to raise funds and pay for a TCK license like other IBM, BEA and other vendors? With all the tech donations from IBM, is it unrealistic for Apache to hope to raise these funds from supporting vendors?

    2) Regarding field of use restrictions on the Java SE TCK license, aren't these restrictions imposed for valid technical reasons? Is it realistic to want to run Java SE on mobile devices when only a subset of the Java SE API would be available? Why not create Harmony SE and Harmony ME and get two TCK licenses, one for standard edition and one for mobile edition?

    I realize that Java ME is not perfect and competition in the mobile space is very intense, but I think the concept of one Java API for all mobile devices still has merit and I would hope that companies and organizations like Apache and Google would stay the course and work within the JCP to improve Java ME.

  3. 1.)  That is the fundamental issue as people feel that the stance by Oracle is directly against one of the founding prinicples of the JCP.  I don't beleive it was a matter of funds (IBM could have easily bank rolled the application if they'd wanted to).  I don't think Oracle would give out the TCK anyhow.

    2.)  It's not for technical reasons.  Oracle has refused to comment but most pundits believe that they do not want another open source 'Java' splitting the mind share etc of developers and enterprises alike.

    We'd all love to see Apache and Google working harmoniously with Oracle.  It's certainly not looking likely in Apache's case, we'll see about Google.