For the first time in 11 years, I did not make it to JavaOne this year. And now I'm really regretting it. I'm certain that there's a fabulous party going on at Moscone Center this week.
Yesterday, Jonathan Schwartz and Rich Green announced their intention to release Java under an open source license. Timing, licensing, and other details are still to be determined, but I am confident that it will happen.
I worked for Sun Software for 18 months in 2000-2001. I had 2 major objectives while I was there. Convince them to embrace SOAP and to open source Java. I was successful in the first objective, but my arguments for open sourcing Java fell on deaf ears. Or at least it felt that way.
But I know that the open source faction was heard. I always got the sense that Sun would eventually open source Java -- the question was when. Being part of the open source proponent faction was never considered to be a bad thing. Many of my most ardent and vociferous comrades-in-arms have done quite well at Sun -- folks like Simon Phipps, who is now Sun's chief open source officer, and Ingrid Van Den Hoogen, who is now Sun's VP of Brand Experience and Community Marketing.
I really hoped it would happen after the court settlement between Sun and Microsoft. (That was the only excuse I would accept for waiting.) But I guess we had to wait for Scott to step down.
In any case, thank you Jonathan.