Eye on Oracle

Apr 12 2010   6:36PM GMT

Gosling leaves Oracle – will Java follow?

Shayna Garlick Shayna Garlick Profile: Shayna Garlick

We recently examined the increasingly optimistic future of MySQL and Java now that they’re in Oracle’s hands, especially as the two open source products have just been endorsed by Oracle and Sun executives, including the Father of Java himself, James Gosling.

However, Gosling dropped a surprise announcement on Friday when he announced he had resigned from Oracle.

Gosling, who invented the Java programming language over 15 years ago, recently told Oracle users he was “pretty encouraged about the way things are going to work out.” But he must not have been encouraged enough.  Though Gosling didn’t give any specific reason for leaving Oracle behind, he did write in his blog post titled “Time to move on…”, that “just about anything I could say that would be accurate and honest would do more harm than good.”

How will this affect Oracle?

The software giant has already seen the departure of numerous Sun executives – such as Chief Open Source Officer Simon Phipps and Sun CEO Jonathan Schwartz – and we’ve yet to see where Oracle can take Sun without them.  From the looks of the comments on Gosling’s blog posts, many don’t have high hopes. While most of those who commented had good words for Gosling and what he had created, it was a different story for Oracle and Java’s future:

“I’ll say what you don’t want to admit, because, as a long-time grunt there, I know Oracle well. Technologically, Oracle is a complete mess. It’s operated more like an inefficient and ineffective government than a business. Ellison is a fool not to have given you anything and everything to keep you, and others from Sun, happy”

“From one ex-SUN employee to another – well done for lasting as long as you did.”

“Java R.I.P. Well Java isn’t dead yet but I think it is dying and when Oracle took over the nails where firmly seated in the java coffin. Glad you left. I think Oracle is one of the least innovative tech companies in history.”

What do you think? Will this affect Oracle’s plans for Java?  Do you think Oracle can – or should – continue to develop Java?

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