07 November 2007

Java 1.6 Missing From MacOS X Leopard - Take It Easy Folks

There's been a lot of banter lately regarding the release of MacOS X Leopard and it's lack of Java 1.6. I understand that this is a letdown since it was included in the Leopard betas that were released, but is it really that big a deal? I think everyone needs to relax a bit on this issue.

I understand the interest in using some of the new features that Java 1.6 has to offer. I have even blogged about Apple's lack of communication about its plans regarding Java and I stand by what I said. But seriously, how many companies are actually using 1.6 for development or even in production yet? IMO, the real issue is not that Java 1.6 is not available yet as much as it is about Apple's continued lack of communication regarding Java in general.

Now is a good time to take another look at Eric's OS X Java Definitive Timeline. This diagram does a very good job of helping us remember how Apple has behaved with its Java releases to date. Given this past behavior, I'm really not worried at all. I am, however, still a bit miffed that Apple's ability to communicate its intentions with Java technology has not improved at all. I think this is what we should all be lobbying for.

If we're going to try to affect change, we need to start with some realistic expectations. Trying to make Apple release a product faster is like trying to make Apple move a mountain faster because we say so. No matter how much people bitch and moan, it's just not going to happen any faster. C'mon, be realistic here. We're all developers and we know that having someone asking over and over, 'is it done yet? is it done yet? is it done yet?' won't speed the delivery of the solution. Trying to make Apple understand that we'd like more communication is far more realistic. This is like asking Apple to talk about the mountain it is going to move. Given that we're all Apple fans, we should be telling Apple that we can't wait to get our hands on Java 1.6, could you please, please, puh-lease give us a status report? Requesting more information is something to which Apple might actually respond. Getting testy and demanding that Apple release Java 1.6 NOW is not going to help the cause.

So, to repeat, I'd like to see Java 1.6 on MacOS X as much as everyone else. I just think we need to reassess the tactics being used so that we can positively affect the situation instead of painting Java developers using MacOS X to be demanding and pushy.

Oh, BTW, here you go, Geert: 13949712720901ForOSX


  1. From your point of view is not that big deal maybe, but... Is it normal for "best development platform for Java" that developers can not practice new features in Java 1.6? How many customers should run java 1.6 in their projects? I think one such customer is for Mac OS X Java developer too much :(

  2. It's 12/15, where is Java 1.6 for OS X? Just a question...

  3. I really have no idea as I've seen no new news from Apple about it.