2006/11/13

Sun Java Released to Open Source

Jonathan Schwartz, president of Sun Microsystems, announced on his blog today that Sun is releasing Java under the open source GPL version 2.

Tim O'Reilly, head of O'Reilly Media, said "Everyone has been expecting that one day Sun would open source Java technology, but no one expected just how far they'd go -- GPL. "It's a bold move and a great opportunity both for Sun and for free and open source software."

Jonathan mentioned that part of Sun's motivation in releasing under the GPL was the Novell/Microsoft announcement last week which suggested "that free and open source software wasn't safe unless a royalty was being paid." Another bit of negative feedback about the Novell/MS deal came from the Samba team who said Novell should "work with the Software Freedom Law Center to undo the patent agreement and acknowledge its obligations as a beneficiary of the Free Software community." Not too much chance of that happening, but it will be interesting to watch whether Novell's move makes SUSE stronger in the Linux world or whether it hurt's SUSE's market share.

It's been an exciting and interesting two weeks in the open source world. Although much of the open source movement in the USA is restricted to the tech or geek community, there are increasing signs of the open source concept creeping into other sectors of the American economy and society.

To open your eyes a bit wider about open source, consider reading "Open Sources 2.0" from O'Reilly Media. You'll be glad you did.

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