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Java™ Network Programming and Distributed Computing by Michael Reilly, David Reilly

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2.3. The Java Platform

Certainly the language is an important part of Java technology, but the story doesn't end there. As a third-generation language, the source code instructions written in Java must be compiled to a form that the computer is capable of understanding. Most languages would be compiled to native machine code, capable of running on a specific CPU architecture. The problem with that approach, however, is that code must be compiled for all the likely CPU architectures that the user may want (resulting in many software builds, as well as issues of distribution for developers), or for a single architecture that the user must adapt to the software—neither are optimum solutions.

NOTE

For those unfamiliar with the term third-generation ...

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