Chapter . Introduction

Some revolutions catch the world completely by surprise. The World Wide Web, the Linux operating system, and social networking all rose to prominence unexpectedly.

The remarkable success of the Java programming language, on the other hand, caught no one by surprise. Java has been the source of great expectations since its introduction a decade ago. When Sun Microsystems launched Java by incorporating it into web browsers, a torrent of publicity welcomed the arrival of the new language.

Sun cofounder Bill Joy didn’t hedge his bets at all when describing the company’s new language. “This represents the end result of nearly 15 years of trying to come up with a better programming language and environment for building simpler and ...

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