Friday Jun 08, 2012

JCP.next.3: time to get to work

As I've previously reported in this blog, we planned three JSRs to improve the JCP’s processes and to meet our members’ expectations for change.

The first - JCP.next.1, or more formally JSR 348: Towards a new version of the Java Community Process - was completed in October 2011. This focused on a small number of simple but important changes to make our process more transparent and to enable broader participation. We're already seeing the benefits of these changes as new and existing JSRs adopt the new requirements.

organization

However, because we wanted to complete this JSR quickly we deliberately postponed a number of more complex items, including everything that would require modifying the JSPA (the legal agreement that members sign when they join the organization) to a follow-on JSR.

The second JSR (JSR 355: JCP Executive Committee Merge) is in progress now and will complete later this year. This JSR is even simpler than the first, and is focused solely on merging the two Executive Committees into one for greater efficiency and to encourage synergies between the Java ME and Java SE platforms.

Continuing the momentum to move Java and the JCP forward we have just filed the third JSR (JCP.next.3) as JSR 358: A major revision of the Java Community Process. This JSR will modify the JSPA as well as the Process Document, and will tackle a large number of complex issues, many of them postponed from JSR 348. For these reasons we expect to spend a considerable amount of time working on it - at least a year, and probably more.

The current version of the JSPA was created back in 2002, although some minor changes were introduced in 2005. Since then the organization and the environment in which we operate have changed significantly, and it is now time to revise our processes to ensure that they meet our current needs.

JCPWe have a long list of topics to be considered, including the role of independent implementations (those not derived from the Reference Implementation), licensing and open source, ensuring that our new transparency requirements are implemented correctly, compatibility policy and TCKs, the role of individual members, patent policy, and IP flow.

The Expert Group for JSR 358, as with all process-change JSRs, consists of all members of the Executive Committees. Even though the JSR has just been filed we started discussions on the various topics several months ago (see the EC's meeting minutes for details) and our EC members - including the new members who joined within the last year or two - are actively engaged. Now it's your opportunity to get involved.

As required by version 2.8 of our Process (introduced with JSR 348) we will conduct all our business in the open. We have a public java.net project where you can follow and participate in our work. All of our deliberations will be copied to a public Observer mailing list, we'll track our issues on a public Issue Tracker, and all our documents (meeting agendas and minutes, task lists, working drafts) will be published in our Document Archive.

We're just getting started, but we do want your input. Please visit us on java.net where you can learn how to participate.

Let's get to work...

Thursday Apr 05, 2012

Merging the Executive Committees

EC Merge

As I explained in this blog last year, we use the Process to change the Process. The first of three planned JSRs to modify the way the JCP operates (JSR 348: Towards a new version of the Java Community Process) completed in October 2011. That JSR focused on changes to make our process more transparent and to enable broader participation.

The second JSR was inspired by our conviction that Java is One Platform and by our expectation that Java ME and Java SE will become more aligned over time. In anticipation of this change JSR 355: JCP Executive Committee Merge will merge the two Executive Committees into one.

The JSR is going very well. We have reached consensus within the Executive Committees, which serve as the Expert Group for process-change JSRs. How we intend to make the transition to a single EC is explained in the revised versions of the Process and EC Standing Rules documents that are currently posted for Early Draft Review. Our intention is to reduce the total number of EC seats but to keep the same ratio (2:1) of ratified and elected seats.

Briefly, the plan will be implemented in two stages. The October 2012 elections will be held as usual, but candidates will be informed that they will serve only a one-year term if elected. The two ECs will be merged immediately after this election; at the same time, Oracle's second permanent seat and one of IBM's two ratified seats will be eliminated. The initial merged EC will therefore have 30 members.

In the October 2013 elections we will eliminate three more ratified seats and two elected seats, thereby reducing the size of the combined EC to 25 members (16 ratified seats, 8 elected seats, plus Oracle's permanent seat.) All remaining seats, including those of members who were elected in 2012, will be up for re-election in 2013; that election should be particularly interesting. Starting in 2013 we will change from a three-year to a two-year election cycle (half of all EC members will be up for re-election each year.)

We believe that these changes will streamline our operations, and position us for a future in which the distinctions between desktop and mobile devices become increasingly blurred.

Please take this opportunity to review and comment on our proposed changes - we appreciate your input.

Thank you, and onward to JCP.next.3!

About

Patrick Curran

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