Java Developer’s Journal Resource CD from 2004

I’ve got some weird stuff on my office bookshelf. While looking for something else, I came across this CD from 2004 which claims to have every issue of JDJ published, up until 2004. That can’t be that may so far, but apparently there was 85 issues up until this point.

“The Complete Works”!

Time to crack out the USB CD drive and see exactly what’s on this CD. I’ll post a follow up later with some examples what’s on the CD!

18 years ago the industry was questioning the longevity of Java … and it’s still going strong

In the April 2002 edition of the Java Developer Journal (which at that time was a major monthly publication in the Java world), the magazine editor wrote a column titled “There may be trouble ahead”, questioning how long Java had left. Funny thing is, this really does seem to be a perpetual question that gets asked every few years, and yet here we are 18 years later after this article was written, and Java has been going strong for 25 years.

This year Oracle in their role as stewards for the language (after Oracle bought Sun Microsystems in 2010), celebrated Java’s 25th year with a #MovedByJava social media campaign, looking back and encouraging others to share their stories and experiences from using Java over the past 25 years.

Java Developer Journal April 2002 – page 5
Java Developer Journal April 2002 – page 98

This column really has some dire predictions for the time, notably this prediction:

… 5 years? Wow.

Admittedly, the threat at that time that Microsoft’s .NET and the C# language in particular was going to take over the world was real, although Java still lived on to dominate severside processing for many years.

It sounds like at this time, Mono, the open source framework the article refers to was still in development, but even now that’s come and been around for a number of years this threat really came to nothing:

Even as Microsoft themselves have developed their own cross platform runtime for .NET apps on Windows, MacOS and Linux (.NET Core) clearly cashing in on the interest in Mono and Java’s own cross platform support with JVMs for every platform, again… this threat has still come to not much.

At the time this article was written in 2002 Java J2SE 1.4 was just released, and 18 years later we’re getting new major releases every 6 months and Java 15 was just released in September 2020, there’s clearly life in a 25 year old language yet.

Java 15 support in Eclipse

It used to be hit or miss and usually some delay before the latest Java version would get full new language feature support in the latest version of Eclipse. With these new Java version plugins from the Marketplace though, adding support is now as easy as installing the plugin:

The Eclipse team has been doing a great job with these plugins for latest language support.

Java release schedule summary: 6 monthly and LTS releases

I have to admit I can never remember which Java releases are the LTS releases at this point, so for reference, here’s a summary:

  • Java 8, the last Oracle release before the 6 month release cadence started, was released March 2014
  • After Java 8, the 6 month release cadence has so far had releases every March and September
  • The 6 month releases are superseded and no longer supported as soon as the next release comes out
  • Between 8 and 11, Java 9 and 10 were non-LTS
  • Java 11 was the first LTS release after Java 8, released on September 2018
  • The LTS releases are on an approx 3 year cycle
  • The next LTS release will be Java 17, expected approx. September 2021

This info was summarized from Oracle’s Java SE support roadmap here and the Wikipedia page here.