Thursday, September 9, 2010

Java (software platform)

Java refers to a number of computer software products and specifications from Sun Microsystems, a subsidiary of Oracle Corporation, that together provide a system for developingapplication software and deploying it in a cross-platform environment. Java is used in a wide variety of computing platforms from embedded devices and mobile phones on the low end, toenterprise servers and supercomputers on the high end. Java is used in mobile phones, Web servers and enterprise applications, and while less common on desktop computers, Java appletsare often used to provide improved and secure functionalities while browsing the World Wide Web.

Writing in the Java programming language is the primary way to produce code that will be deployed as Java bytecode, though there are bytecode compilers available for other languages such as JavaScript, Python, and Ruby. Several new languages have been designed to run natively on the Java Virtual Machine (JVM), such as Scala, Clojure and Groovy. Java syntaxborrows heavily from C and C++, but object-oriented features are modeled after Smalltalk andObjective-C.[1] Java eliminates certain low-level constructs such as pointers and has a very simple memory model where every object is allocated on the heap and all variables of object types are references. Memory management is handled through integrated automatic garbage collection performed by the JVM.

On November 13, 2006, Sun Microsystems made the bulk of its implementation of Java available under the GNU General Public License,[2] although there are still (a very few) parts distributed as precompiled binaries due to copyright issues with Sun-licensed (not owned) code.

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