JAVAONE - Java getting Linux boost

Java development is expected to get a boost on Linux at the JavaOne conference in two weeks, with partnerships anticipated for including the Java Runtime Environment with Linux distributions, Sun officials said on Thursday.

Although the officials would not reveal who the Linux distributors would be, they said the intention is to distribute runtimes for Java Platform, Standard Edition (Java SE), with Linux so that developers do not have to obtain them on their own. Developers could then use the enterprise version of Java (Java Platform, Enterprise Edition, or Java EE) on top of the standard edition in building applications.

"SE is the core platform. EE is the layer above for application development," said Laurie Tolson, vice president of the Java Platform Group at Sun.

Sun officials conducted a teleconference at Sun offices to unveil Java EE 5, which was approved by the Java Community Process this week. The unveiling of Java EE 5 serves as a curtain-raiser for the JavaOne conference, which begins in San Francisco on May 16.

"This is a very significant upgrade to the enterprise Java platform," said Joe Keller, vice president of marketing for SOA and Integration Platforms at Sun. Java EE features simplified programming, especially for Web services, the Web tier, and transactional components, Keller said.

Key improvements include adherence to the Enterprise JavaBeans 3 specification, for programming of "plain old Java objects," and also backing for JavaServer Faces (JSF) 1.2, for simplified Web development. JSF support gives Java EE 5 a Web 2.0 bent, enabling development of applications via AJAX (Asynchronous JavaScript and XML), according to Sun.