Apache Open Letter to Sun

As you may have seen, the Apache Software Foundation posted an open letter to Sun this morning.

Sun has only just received this letter and since Sun had previously considered this matter private, we need some time to consider it before we provide a more detailed response.

Here are a few initial thoughts:

- Sun is working with as many communities as possible to create an open source implementation of the Java platform under GPL v2 that mainstream open source communities can work with - this includes TCKs.

- Java technology has many stakeholders, and we recognize that we will not be able to please everyone as we move through this process. In some cases, we'll have to agree to disagree on some points.

- Our current priority is to make the Java platform accessible to the GNU/Linux community as quickly as possible.

- As you'll note from Apache's letter, this is a dispute over specific terms, not over Sun providing a TCK.

-We know that the open source process is a journey and we will continue to work with the open source communities and the licensees to determine how Java technology evolves.
Comments:

To summarize Geir Magnusson Jr's open letter to Sun, he says the license for Sun's Java Compatibility Kit (JCK) is prohibitive and in conflict with Sun's obligations as a Java Community Process (JCP) specification lead. He'd like a non-prohibitive license within 30 days, or a reason why not. It sounds like he has a fair point?

Posted by Kevin Hutchinson on April 10, 2007 at 08:35 AM PDT #

It is true that this dispute is about terms but it also about trust and integrity. The Apache Software Foundation is a well known charity dedicated to the creation and maintenance of open source software. As a charity, there are some terms which Apache cannot accept. Adding a limit to fields of use means that Harmony would no longer be open source and so Apache would not (in conscience) be able to continue to support it's development.

Posted by Robert Burrell Donkin (Apache Member but speaking purely personally) on April 10, 2007 at 09:01 AM PDT #

Sun's stellar history of promoting and providing innovation, most significantly in OSS, is now in jeopardy.

I fully appreciate someone in Sun's organization wanting to protect JCK and its possible applications, however OSS advocate support which has promoted and extended the use of Java technology will quickly recede if this is not addressed to the satisfaction of the community.

Rather than a hammer over Sun, understand that it is a matter of OSS advocates' determination to remain true to their values. I hope those with a longer view at Sun continue to understand, appreciate and embrace those values

Posted by Michael Craven on April 11, 2007 at 06:12 AM PDT #

"I fully appreciate someone in Sun's organization wanting to protect JCK and its possible applications, however OSS advocate support which has promoted and extended the use of Java technology will quickly recede if this is not addressed to the satisfaction of the community" Actually it would most probably take IT over or float Solaris as a Quantum OS BetaTesting/on shake down trials. Apaches are hardly ever wrong about everything Important 42 Live IT.

Posted by amanfromMars on April 11, 2007 at 06:52 PM PDT #

The letter is laughable. The Harmony project is being held back by the fact that Java, including libraries, is a large and moving target. Java 6 is out now with 7 being worked on. Harmony is aiming at Java 5 and is still not there yet. And this was with the source code to Java 5 always being available. Now that Sun is GPL'ing Java 7 \*who cares\* about Harmony? Is there really a big demand for buggy, incomplete, two revision old JVM's that may or may not run a Java application??

Posted by Bryan Althaus on April 12, 2007 at 04:19 AM PDT #

Bryan Althaus, Your comment is really lovely. :) Why not let a buggy poor open source java implementation take a try? One more thing, writing a good software costs more than one day. You may not know how much time did sun spend on java 5.

Posted by Andrew Zhang (Pure personal opnion) on April 12, 2007 at 11:36 PM PDT #

Bryan Althaus, Your comment about Java source code always being available is true. But it was and is only available under the Java Research License (JRL) which prohibits use for anything other than academic purposes. Apache's implementation would circumvent this limitation.

Posted by Vikram Mohan on April 13, 2007 at 10:54 AM PDT #

+1 to Michael Craven's comments. Making the TCK publicly available is important and critical to the openness of Java. However Sun is doing some great things and I don't think it's fair to pile on. Open-sourcing the whole of Java is a monumental task, and there is still much more to be done before Java can really be called open-source. Specifically, there are still third-party encumbrances that need to be GPL'ed by the copyright owners or rewritten from scratch by the community. There's a lot of work to do, and opening up the TCK is just one part of that. Give it time.

Posted by Matthew Hall on April 17, 2007 at 12:16 AM PDT #

Post a Comment:
Comments are closed for this entry.
About

Oracle Global Communications

Feature News


Stay Connected

Twitter

Search

Archives
« April 2014
SunMonTueWedThuFriSat
  
1
2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10
11
12
13
14
15
16
17
18
19
20
21
22
23
24
25
26
27
28
29
30
   
       
Today