Why is Java more important

Java is to become an important part of the Mac OS

Peter Müller

The last developer conference in San Jose leaves no doubt: Apple relies on Sun's Internet programming language Java. While Java on the Mac was previously rather a marginal phenomenon and completely unacceptable due to the low execution speed, Cupertino is now striking a new note.

Java should get faster

Apple's most important goal of expanding market share and remaining profitable can only be achieved if you can offer open and superior solutions. The compatibility problems of Java applets (mini programs) in different browsers (with different virtual machines) and the performance results on the Pendargon Systems website show that Java on the Mac has so far been neither open nor superior. To the displeasure of Steve Jobs, only Windows and Unix systems are at the forefront here. There is nothing to be seen of Apple systems far and wide. It's actually a shame, Apple's hardware architecture would be capable of more.

To get rid of this situation, Apple recently signed a Java license agreement with Microsoft, the aim of which is to develop a fast virtual machine and J / Direct access (operating system calls) for the Mac community. Now there are two more decisions: Apple is porting the Java plug-in from Sun, which should give users the freedom to use the fastest virtual machine in the browser of their choice, and Apple is licensing Symantec's Just in Time (JIT) compiler for Java.

MRJ 2.1 in September

The first integrated version of the Mac OS Runtime for Java (MRJ) should be available on the Internet as early as September 1998. According to Apple, the new MRJ version should be up to 300 percent faster than the current version 2.0. Although this result is not enough to put the Windows computers in their place, Apple is leaving the backbench role in the Java world.

That Apple is not alone in the fight for the latest Java Virtual Machine is indicated by the statements of IBM engineers, for whom the speed of development from Sun is also too rapid. The new version 1.2 of the Java Development Kit (JDK) was presented at Sun's Java developer conference. Apple and other companies are currently working on version 1.1.6, which should also be supported by MRJ 2.1. In MRJ 3.0, which is planned for 1999, support for the current JDK standard 1.2 will then take place.

Martin Stein