InfoWorld is carrying an article Incremental Open-Sourcing Java interviewing a Sun software CTO that says Expect the open-sourcing of the Java programming language to be done in incremental steps, with some pieces available by next June — but not the entire platform.
Good. Its been long clear, even to me, that an incremental opening process is the only feasible way to go ahead. And that business reasons as well as technical ones can impact on the exact timetable, or let them go backwards if they determine the bathwater still has some babies or unresolvable IP in it. Hence my call to open source Swing first (or even just the HTML components!) From comments to earlier blogs on this, I think some folk at Sun had seen the writing on the wall on this one too: the gradual move of SwingLabs towards open source development for example.
Microsoft’s recent Twelve Tenets to Promote Competition, a title rather like “Beware of Strangers” by the Big Bad Wolf, is more evidence of the big boys wanting to avoid being locked out of open source innovation. Of course, other factors are at play too.