Well, Tim waited a whole 10 minutes to get his post up.
The rest of the story today is HotSpot and JavaC are getting released now. Early next year Sun expects to have a fully buildable JDK available. The response to everyone’s question: Why? Because Sun hopes the GPL will drive adoption, and I think that is a pretty safe bet. It will be nice to see a real JDK and Glassfish show up in the more purist Linux distros. The thing I can’t help but think, though, is this is the biggest boon to RedHat, who now gets to put all of their top-shelf products into Fedora again — lets face it, the LDAP server is nice, but JBoss is better.
It will be offered under multiple licenses, which means the contributor agreement hell is still there. It also means that Sun can’t scrape (L)GPL code of the interwebs and bundle it with the JRE, which is still kind of a shame. I do agree with Tim, though. I expect forks, but not “serious” forks. As I mentioned in the previous post, I think there is a serious opportunity here for aftermarket JRE’s with things like jSDL and libLAME/Tritonous, possibly even things like GCJ — which will surely get a huge boost from this as they can now start cannibalizing the core code — and SWT built it.
One thing I think Sun is going to find with the GPL — like QT before it — is it is never going to get the “stink” off of Java with large swaths of the Linux community. Much like *cough* certain political pundits, they have spent so many years talking about Java in particular tones, they are never going to bring themselves to admit that their issues have been addressed. On the other side of the fence, the “viral” FUD on the GPL is going to get dialed up a notch. In short, I don’t expect Sun to win too many friends with this move in the short term. I do think it is a good move for the long term health of the platform though.