Will Sun Open-Source Java?

According to sources inside Sun, an ongoing debate over whether to open-source Java is coming to a head with the JavaOne conference looming May 16. New Sun Microsystems CEO Jonathan Schwartz, who led the open-sourcing of Solaris, could not be reached for comment on the matter.

Nevertheless, opponents of the idea are trying "to get time with Schwartz now that he is CEO so they can get their point of view across before the JavaOne conference in May, where some speculate he may announce the open-sourcing of Java," said a source close to Sun who requested anonymity.

What Schwartz will ultimately decide on Java remains to be seen, but it's another item on his long to-do list. Schwartz, who took the reins from Scott McNealy April 24, has to keep Wall Street happy and structure Sun so it will be consistently profitable. Sun hasn't reported an annual profit since 2001 and had a loss of $217 million for the fiscal third quarter of 2006, which ended March 26.

So far, Sun has resisted many calls to open-source Java. The reason: Sun fears doing so will open the doors for competitors to grab and change Java, resulting in the kernel forking and compatibility problems.

News source: eWeek

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