Java technology was created as a computer programming tool in a small, secret effort called "the Green Project" at Sun Microsystems in 1991.
The secret "Green Team," fully staffed at 13 people and led by James Gosling, locked themselves away in an anonymous office on Sand Hill Road in Menlo Park, cut off all regular communications with Sun, and worked around the clock for 18 months.
They were trying to anticipate and plan for the "next wave" in computing. Their initial conclusion was that at least one significant trend would be the convergence of digitally controlled consumer devices and computers.
A device-independent programming language code-named "Oak" was the result.
To demonstrate how this new language could power the future of digital devices, the Green Team developed an interactive, handheld home-entertainment device controller targeted at the digital cable television industry. But the idea was too far ahead of its time, and the digital cable television industry wasn't ready for the leap forward that Java technology offered them.
As it turns out, the Internet was ready for Java technology, and just in time for its initial public introduction in 1995, the team was able to announce that the Netscape Navigator Internet browser would incorporate Java technology.
Now, nearing its twelfth year, the Java platform has attracted over 5 million software developers, worldwide use in every major industry segment, and a presence in a wide range of devices, computers, and networks of any programming technology.
In fact, its versatility, efficiency, platform portability, and security have made it the ideal technology for network computing, so that today, Java powers more than 2.5 billion devices:
Today, you can find Java technology in networks and devices that range from the Internet and scientific supercomputers to laptops and cell phones, from Wall Street market simulators to home game players and credit cards -- just about everywhere.
- over 800 million PCs
- over 1.2 billion mobile phones and other handheld devices (source: Ovum)
- 1.65 billion smart cards
- plus set-top boxes, printers, web cams, games, car navigation systems,
lottery terminals, medical devices, parking payment stations, etc.
The best way to preview these applications is to explore java.com, the ultimate marketplace, showcase, and central information resource for businesses, consumers, and software developers who use Java technology.
Why Software Developers Choose Java Technology
The Java programming language has been thoroughly refined, extended, tested, and proven by an active community of over five million software developers.
Mature, extremely robust, and surprisingly versatile Java technology has become invaluable in allowing developers to:
- Write software on one platform and run it on practically any other platform
- Create programs to run within a web browser and web services
- Develop server-side applications for online forums, stores, polls, HTML forms processing, and more
- Combine Java technology-based applications or services to create highly customized applications or services
- Write powerful and efficient applications for mobile phones, remote processors,
low-cost consumer products, and practically any device with a digital heartbeat
Some Ways Software Developers Learn Java Technology
Of course, colleges and universities offer courses in programming for the Java platform. In addition, developers can enhance their Java programming skills by reading Sun's java.sun.com Web site, subscribing to Java technology focused newsletters, using the Java Tutorial and the New to Java Programming Center, and signing up for web, virtual, or instructor led courses.