Just sent this to Simpson Garfinkel in response to:
Just read your Salon article at:
First.. I agree with you.. but this isn't Java's fault. This is SUN Microsystem's fault. They have systematically lied to the developer community, used their influence to pull the wool over the eyes the press, and basically do everything possible to ensure that Java *will* fail. This despite years of historical evidence from the Computer Industry that Closed Systems fail. SUN made it hard, it not impossibe for people to take Java and do innovative things with it.
SUN thought that interpreted X-platfrom applications would destroy Microsoft. The only problem was they were trying to replace the Microsoft Empire with another Empire just as Evil.
SUN would not license Java to companies (such as TowerJ) that wanted to build ahead-of-time optimizing compilers (this would make Java just as fast as C.. give or take a few implementation specific percentage points).
They insisted on making Java bytecode interpreted only. The GNU Compiler Collection 3.0 (with GNU Java Compiler) should fix this as it will be the first Open compiler with support for Java. This should remove the last barrier to Java's success! Java will no longer be under the thumb of an ignorant industry giant!
It doesn't matter. This has never been Java strength. The problem with JVMs is that they are closed source and impossible to port to other Operating Systems. With an Open Compiler, GJC. This will be no longer an issue because Java will run on every OS where GCC is ported (I think this is basically ever OS in existence).
Personally, I think the creators of Java did an amazing job. The problem is that their implementation was terrible. The Java Language Specification is still an awesome exercise in language design. This work will live on in GJC.
I look forward to the time when developers can work on Free Software in any language they choose regardless politics.