The Future of Java and Mozilla...
Monday September 14th, 1998
George Giannukos writes in with a question about Java that I'd like to expand upon and pose to our readers: "...Microsoft is in court with Sun about its Java license, right? Well, I think Microsoft is definitely going to lose the case and that means Microsoft's Internet Explorer won't be able to run Java apps. Would web sites just stop making Java apps because of this?"
So, let me pose a group of interrelated questions to y'all, based on George's question. Here goes:
1. What do you feel is Java's place in Mozilla's future? In Communicator's future?
2. Should support of Java (or lack of) on IE dictate tech strategy for Mozilla and Communicator?
3. How important is Java to you? Would it continue to have as much importance to you if IE could no longer support it?
Share your comments by clicking on "talkback" on this piece's titlebar. Good way to start off a week! Thanks, George!
#1 Re:The Future of Java and Mozilla...
by Dan Price
Monday September 14th, 1998 6:50 AM
1. Java is potentially very important. My company has a long term strategy of adopting java based front-ends for all desktop systems. We rely on the HTML and Java capabilities equally.
2. IE support should dictate Java support the same way IE affected HTML. Netscape, as a Sun supporter, should sit back and watch what happens. If Microsoft is allowed to subvert Java, Netscape should jump in to trying to direct the language, just like with HTML. If Microsoft toes the line, Netscape should stick with Sun Java.
3. Java is CRITICAL. IE support is not critical since we don;t use it. We don;t use IE because it is not cross platform.
#2 Nothing will stop MS
by Jah-Wren Ryel
Monday September 14th, 1998 7:14 AM
The courts have already ruled that you can not copyright a language (human or computer). You can copyright a specific implementation of a language. So far, there are two well known java virtual machines out there (and more coming, I believe a GNU one is in the works). The first is Sun's, the second is HP's.
At this point in time HP has implemented the java language the way Sun has specified it. But, you can count on MS either building on HP's VM or rolling their own completely from scratch, to produce a java vm that is identical in "features" to what they have done to the one they licensed from Sun. Sun won't be able to do a thing about it, and MS will continue to provide the same functionality they currently do.
#3 IE will have Java
Monday September 14th, 1998 9:00 AM
I highly doubt IE will be w/o Java even if they loose the case, it will just have to use a compliant JVM instead of the one MS wrote, or MS will have to fix theirs to be compliant.
I do believe that Java support IS critical in Mozilla though, and any goings-on with IE should be unrelated to the direction of Java+Mozilla.
#4 Re:The Future of Java and Mozilla...
by Ted Halmrast
Monday September 14th, 1998 9:53 AM
I think Mozilla's choice of using a pluggable API is the correct one. Hopefully Netscape/Mozilla and Sun can work together on this and see this API get incorporated into other browsers. Certainly Mozilla should push a Java-compliant VM such as Sun's as the default. It would be nice if Mozilla came bundled with the VM that the Java Plug-in installs.
#5 Re:The Future of Java and Mozilla...
by R. Manley
Monday September 14th, 1998 9:57 AM
IE will still include Java it just won't be broken as MS would like. T.
#6 Re:The Future of Java and Mozilla...
by David Spencer
Tuesday September 15th, 1998 10:28 AM
Yes, please always keep java. It is useful for intranet apps for enterprises that have (de-facto) standardized on Netscape/Mozilla.
#7 Re:The Future of Java and Mozilla...
by Charles Kerr
Tuesday September 15th, 1998 10:49 AM
Mozilla should support Java via Sun/Symantec's Java implementation. Java is the best game in town for running apps over the web, and Mozilla needs to support this. <p> Microsoft has already said they won't support JDK 1.2, Swing, etc., so right now I'm forcing the Java Plug-In on my customers. If Mozilla supports Java, then I'd be able to recommend Mozilla instead of Mozilla + Java Plug-In. <p> From that standpoint, it's just a convenience issue. But remember why MS licensed Java in the first place: to be competitive with Netscape. Built-in JDK 1.2 support in Mozilla would be a big plus for Mozilla where I work. <p> Java will continue to be critical to me, even if Microsoft drops it from IE.
#8 Re:The Future of Java and Mozilla...
by Charles Kerr
Tuesday September 15th, 1998 10:50 AM
Mozilla should support Java via Sun/Symantec\'s Java implementation. Java is the best game in town for running apps over the web, and Mozilla needs to support this. <p> Microsoft has already said they won\'t support JDK 1.2, Swing, etc., so right now I\'m forcing the Java Plug-In on my customers. If Mozilla supports Java, then I\'d be able to recommend Mozilla instead of Mozilla + Java Plug-In. <p> From that standpoint, it\'s just a convenience issue. But remember why MS licensed Java in the first place: to be competitive with Netscape. Built-in JDK 1.2 support in Mozilla would be a big plus for Mozilla where I work. <p> Java will continue to be critical to me, even if Microsoft drops it from IE.
#9 Re:The Future of Java and Mozilla...
by Jian Wu
Tuesday September 15th, 1998 11:26 AM
How can Communicator or Mozilla be different with MS IE4/5? The most important way is Java support! If Netscape communcator had had a strong Java support, Netscape communicator would not be the situation right now.
#10 Re:The Future of Java and Mozilla...
by Chris Knoll
Tuesday September 15th, 1998 2:08 PM
I'm sorry, but Java is just too important as a technology in the internet space, that if IE was to drop java entierly, they would be giving up the browser war. I don't like IE THAT much that if it didn't have java I would still use it.
#11 Re:The Future of Java and Mozilla...
by George (beg)
Tuesday September 15th, 1998 2:46 PM
Its not about IE dropping Java!! Its all about Sun letting IE run Java apps.
Correct me if i am wrong, but Sun only licensed Java to M$ get enough support. Well, they have enough support and now that Microsoft trying to F*** Sun over, i think Scott is going to quit licensing to Microsoft, meaning that Netscape will only be able to run Java apps?
#12 Re:The Future of Java and Mozilla...
by Jeff Giacobbe
Saturday September 19th, 1998 12:21 PM
Full JDK1.2 support in Mozilla would deal a lethal blow to M$ IE. Microsoft has gotten away with screwing over the cross-platform promise of Java primarily because NOBODY ELSE had a fully JDK1.1 compliant browser to compete with them.
The suits at Netscape Inc. really dropped the ball wrt JDK compliance, and Communicator 4.06 *still* isn't 100% compliant. This situation allows M$ to play it's "poisoned Java" game while simultaneously crowing about how it has the "most compliant" browser on the market.
Mozilla 5.0 with a 100% JDK1.2 compliant JVM right out of the box is probably Bill Gates' worst nightmare. Customers would then have a compelling reason to ditch IE, and M$ would be powerless to counter the threat unless they commit to 100% pure Java.
To all the talented folks involved in the Mozilla project: PLEASE DON'T DROP THE BALL LIKE THE SUITS DID!
It's time to bring the 100% pure Java sledgehammer down on Billy's head...
by Theodore Serbinski
Saturday September 26th, 1998 5:29 PM
Well to answer some other question, if IE does lose Java, it still can be put in the browser. Even though Java won't be a standard part, Sun does offer a Java plugin that has all of the classes and will support JDK1.2 when it is released. This plugin makes applets even better and allows for more classes to be used that aren't support in IE or NN.
Also, Java is a very important language. Lack of support would hurt many websites, as the applets provide a vital role in up to the minute info and their cross platform characteristic.