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It was back in 1995 when Sun Microsystems launched the Java programming language. Shortly after the launch of the World Wide Web and right before the browser wars between the Netscape Navigation and the Internet Explorer, Sun’s Java platform is developed similar to that of C as well as C++, but it also comes with a number of low-level features.

The compiling of the Java language is done by byte code and in order to make use of the platform one must have the Java Virtual Machine installed on his or her computer. Since then, with the use of the General Public License, the Java technologies have been released as a completely free development language. However there are some components that did not get released under the GNU.

It was James Gosling who started the development of the language’s core back in 1991 for use on one of his set-top box projects. He initially called Oak in reference to the oak tree that stood outside his office window, but later changed that to Green before naming it Java. The choice for the final release name was actual a random selection of words from a word list he had.

The goal of the development when Sun released Java to the general public was that of the ability to be written once and ran anywhere. It was considered to be fairly secure and since it could be used on networks and be used for file access to name a few benefits, it quickly grew in popularity and within no time, the vast majority of the major web browsers were ready to handle the Java applets.

In 1998, the next version of this development language was ready to be released under what was known as the J2SE 1.2. Later on they would add the J2EE as well as the J2ME; the later being a stripped down version of the run-time environment especially suited for mobile devices. The SE designation in the name refers to the Standard Edition while EE refers to Enterprise Edition and the ME stands for Mobile Edition.

By May of 2007, the entire core of the Java language had finally been fully released under the GPL terms. This has made Java’s entire core now freely available to anyone who wishes to make use of it. However you have to keep in mind that thee is a very small portion of the core which is not held in copyright by Sun Microsystems and as such this small portion is not open sourced.

Original Authors: Nick
Edit Update Authors: M.A.Harris
Updated On: 09/02/2009


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