I usually do not comment on Sun's marketing or activity here in Marketing 2.0, but today is an exception. Today is a major milestone in the software industry as Sun fulfills its promise and open sources all of its key Java implementations using General Public Licence (GPL), the licence used by the Linux community. Sun is launching two new communities: OpenJDK and Mobile & Embedded communities.
The Java community, started back in 1995, is thriving: more than 5 million developers, nearly 4 billion devices including 8 out of every 10 mobile handsets. Java the platform -- Java is often wrongly considered just a development language -- has reached an impressive level of maturity, innovation and adoption. Its promise "Develop once, runs everywhere" attracts now an even wider developer community. This announcement marks the single largest open source contribution the industry has ever seen and propels Sun as the #1 contributor to the open source community, adding to the already open sourced Open Office, NetBeans and OpenSolaris to name a few.
"Sun has made important contributions to the free world already. Things like Open Office and Solaris so [open sourcing Java] adds up to a very important contribution .. Sun has ... contributed more than any other company to the free software community in the form of software. It shows leadership." – Dr. Richard Stahllman, Free Software Foundation
Following important announcements as the Oracle one about RedHat Linux distribution and support and Microsoft cutting a deal with Novell (about SuSe Linux), it is now very clear the open source model for Software will not go away and has changed the software industry and its business model forever. For us marketers, it means a lot when considering the potential impact on other industries where intellectual property is a major asset (music, video, books, motion pictures).
Make sure you attend today (9:30 PST/6:30 pm Paris) the live broadcast announcement if you do care, so you'll get full details.