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"The Java platform is a fundamentally new way of computing, based on the power of networks and the idea that the same software should run on many different kinds of computers, consumer gadgets, and other devices"
Java was initially developed by a team of software engineers at Sun Microsystems under the leadership of James Gosling in 1991, when he was investigating the development of a hardware-independent software platform using C++. The aim became to develop an alternative to C++, to implement control systems for consumer electronic devices.
C++ was found to be unsatisfactory for this task in many ways, and was dropped in favour of a new language called Oak. This new language consequently renamed Java was a powerful, yet straightforward language waiting for a new application.
In 1994 the World-Wide Web emerged and the Sun Developers used Java as the basis of a web browser, beginning the Java/HotJava project. The name was actually derived from the name of the programmers favourite coffee, during a brainstorming session. HotJava is a WWW browser developed by Sun to demonstrate the power of the Java programming language. Java was perfectly suited for use in WWW applications as the program code is compact, platform neutral, and could be used to generate compact programs called applets, that could be embedded in WWW pages.
© 2006 Dr. Derek Molloy (DCU).