"It's not a question of whether we'll open source Java, the question is how, " Schwartz told delegates in his opening keynote at the tradeshow.
By releasing the source code, Sun hopes to attract a new group of developers who previously refused to use the language because of the software licence, Schwartz later added.
A group of developers could split off from the main Java community and form a second, independent group that follows an independent course. This could lead to confusion with developers and cause Java to lose focus.
The dozens of Linux distributions often are considered a prime example of forking gone wrong. Because each distro is different, software developers are forced to certify their applications for each distribution.
IBM has argued that releasing the Java source code could attract more developers to the language because it guarantees that Java will continue to evolve independently from Sun.
Sun has already released significant software portions around Java including the Glassfish application server.
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