The jokes about two evils joining up are easily made, but I’ll try to refrain. Apple recently marked its Java implementation as deprecated. Well, we now know why: Apple and Oracle have announced that Apple will contribute to the OpenJDK project, effectively meaning that Java for Mac OS X will be developed by the OpenJDK community. Why do I have this image in my head?
Apple has always developed its own version of Java for Mac OS X, but the company is now handing over development to the OpenJDK project. Apple will supply key components for a Java SE 7 implementation on Mac OS X, including a 32bit and 64bit HotSpot-based Java virtual machine, class libraries, a networking stack, and the foundation for a new graphical client. The OpenJDK community will then be able to access and contribute to the project.
“We are excited to welcome Apple as a significant contributor in the growing OpenJDK community,” said Hasan Rizvi, senior vice president of development at Oracle, “The availability of Java on Mac OS X plays a key role in the cross-platform promise of the Java platform. The Java developer community can rest assured that the leading edge Java environment will continue to be available on Mac OS X in the future. Combined with last month’s announcement of IBM joining the OpenJDK, the project now has the backing of three of the biggest names in software.”
So, Apple joins OpenJDK, contributes a boatload of code and commits to Java on Mac OS X not long after Oracle sues Google over Android. I’m not prone to black helicopter thinking, but this smells incredibly fishy to me.