"Its the eye of the tiger / its the thrill of the fight," warbled the Tawny Titan as he prowled San Franciscos Moscone Center checking out Suns JavaOne conference. The Proud Puss was ecstatic. The conference was dedicated to "The Tiger" and his "strength, power and fierceness," Sun execs said. "Cest moi," Spence squealed inwardly. Imagine the delusional Drudges dismay when he discovered the Tiger reference was merely to the code name for Suns newly released J2SE (Java 2 Platform, Standard Edition) 5.0.
A Sun engineer had the nerve to don a tiger suit during a demo. All was forgiven, though, when the emcee announced that next up would be a thrilling Siegfried & Roy, Las Vegas-like experience—only to reveal a cuddly 8-week-old tiger cub named Java. The Godfather of Java, James Gosling, and Sun President and Chief Operating Officer Jonathan Schwartz played with the cub onstage. Later, Gosling told the Kitty that cavorting with the cub had been the "coolest thing" of the show for him. Certainly, a better use of animals than in days of old when Scott McNealy hung his dog, Network, over a hydrant labeled Microsoft, laughed the Lynx.
McNealy did provide hijinks. Calling on IBM to create its own intellectual property instead of demanding that Sun open-source Java, he showed a picture of Sam Palmisano, IBMs CEO, chipping away at the Berlin Wall. It was odd imagery to show Suns determination to keep IBM from getting its mitts on Java. After all, the wall did come down, mused the Mouser.
The usually smooth-talking Sun Vice President John Loiacono made the Furballs day with a faux pas when he announced the release of Suns Java Studio Creator, which lets nonprogrammers write Java. Instead of saying "Creator," Loiacono called the technology "Workshop," which is Creators rival from BEA Systems. Meeouch!
When Spence heard that upcoming releases of J2SE were code-named Mustang and Dolphin, respectively, he followed the zoological theme and visited the Thirsty Bear. There, he chatted with a crony who was baffled by a recent Microsoft press statement claiming "28 percent of Windows Server 2003 customers currently report using Windows SharePoint Services, and 45 percent of the remaining customers plan to do so in the next 11 months." When the crony questioned Redmond on its figures, a Microsoft spokesperson said the claim was based on a study Microsoft did with 300 randomly selected U.S. customers. "I wonder what the millions of other Windows Server 2003 users around the globe plan to do?" groused the Grimalkin.