Sun's JDIC and JDNC: A Cross-Platform ActiveX?

Sun Microsystems has focused a lot of attention on its newly open-sourced Looking Glass three-dimensional user interface here at the JavaOne Conference. But a pair of technologies that Sun quietly released as open source last week will have a much more immediate effect on the success of Java on the desktop.

Last week, Sun Microsystems Inc. licensed a pair of the underlying technologies of the Java Desktop System under the open-source LGPL (GNU Lesser General Public License). The two projects, JDNC (JDesktop Network Components) and JDIC (JDesktop Integration Components), are essentially to Java application developers what Microsoft's ActiveX and COM were to Windows developers—an architecture for creating easily configured application components and for integrating with the functionality of the local operating system and other applications.

The main difference between these technologies and their Windows counterparts, of course, is that they work on Windows, Linux and Mac OS X. "Looking Glass was the sizzle," Curtis Sasaki, Sun's vice president in charge of desktop solutions, said in an interview with eWEEK.com. JDNC and JDIC, he said, were the real meat of Sun's latest desktop open-source efforts. JDNC is a set of interface components based on Java 2 Standard Edition and Java Swing visual classes that can be used to build desktop client applications.

News source: eWeek

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