Application Development: Oracle and Java 7: The Top 10 Developer Features

By Darryl K. Taft  |  Posted 2011-07-27 Print this article Print
Oracle and Java 7: The Top 10 Developer Features

Oracle and Java 7: The Top 10 Developer Features

-Project Coin: Diamond OperatorProject Coin is also known as Java Specification Request 334: Small language enhancements. It consists of a set of small language changes to simplify common, day-to-day Java programming tasks: Strings in switch statements, try-with-resources statements, improved type inference for generic instance creation ("diamond"), simplified varargs method invocation, better integral literals, and improved exception handling (multi-catch). The Diamond Operator reduces Java's verbosity surrounding generics by having the compiler infer parameter types for constructors of generic classes, says Dustin Marx.
Oracle will launch the latest version of Java—Java 7—July 28. Although Java 7 is the first major Java revision in about five years, the changes in the language and platform are more evolutionary than revolutionary, according to Java experts—including Mark Reinhold, chief architect of the Java Platform group at Oracle. Yet the changes are welcome by Java developers, as Oracle demonstrated in a recent Webcast. "Java 7 is the most anticipated release ever, said Bruno Souza, president of SOUJava, a Brazilian Java User Group. Java had been plagued by political and market unrest, first at Sun Microsystems, and then at Oracle after it bought Sun. The Java Community Process, which governs the progress of Java, was rife with infighting and accusations of favoritism by Sun and then Oracle. And "Moving Java Forward became a mantra at Oracle, as if to say, "It's ours now, and we're going to take it forward no matter what. "The JCP [Java Community Process] Executive Committee approval of the Java SE 7, Java SE 8 and component JSRs [Java Specification Requests] follows Oracle's recent announcements surrounding OpenJDK momentum with IBM and Apple participation, said Adam Messinger, vice president of Oracle Fusion middleware. "Together, these developments demonstrate a renewed energy behind Java and strengthen its future as the language and platform of choice. All told, 1.1 billion desktops run Java, there are 930 million Java Runtime Environment downloads each year, 3 billion mobile phones run Java, 31 times more Java phones ship every year than Apple and Android combined, 100 percent of all Blu-ray players run Java, and 1.4 billion Java Cards are manufactured each year. This slide show looks at the Top 10 Java 7 features for developers, as selected by Oracle's Java team based on community feedback.
Darryl K. Taft covers the development tools and developer-related issues beat from his office in Baltimore. He has more than 10 years of experience in the business and is always looking for the next scoop. Taft is a member of the Association for Computing Machinery (ACM) and was named 'one of the most active middleware reporters in the world' by The Middleware Co. He also has his own card in the 'Who's Who in Enterprise Java' deck.

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