Sun Microsystems chief executive Scott McNealy is expecting other companies to follow Hewlett Packard and Microsoft into developing their own subsets and clones of Java.
McNealy said: 'People will go after Java with subsets or clones. But we are covering the map of Java subsets with products like Personal Java because we want to make sure developers have high volume and consistent Java APIs (application programming interfaces).'
Commenting on HP's recent move to develop its own, incompatible version of Java for consumer devices, McNealy said: 'I don't know how HP's economic model carries the development expenses for Java in one company.'
But he added that HP was an honourable company that would not infringe Sun's intellectual property.
'Maybe HP's move was a ploy to get us to the bargaining table. But who cares? Wouldn't you rather have the Java coffee cup logo?' he asked. 'HP is free to do printers but we are controlling Java, not for profit or gain, but for users.'
In his keynote speech and also in a question and answer session at the Java One developers' conference in San Francisco, McNealy took his usual swipes at Microsoft, the day after a judge upheld Sun's move to stop Microsoft using the Java logo on its software.
'The whole industry has caught up and passed Microsoft,' he said. 'Customers don't like to reboot. If you monopolise the software development process and you own it, you don't have to move quickly.'
McNealy also touted and demonstrated the idea that a smartcard is all that business people will need to securely use their computers via 'fat servers, thin clients and thin pipes' to ensure costs and bandwidth requirements are kept low.
'The mistake Corel made was to do a Java version of the fat, Office hairball,' he said. He said business staff, customers and partners need fast downloads so only applets come down the pipe from proxy servers, thus maintaining their security.
During his keynote, McNealy also showed Persona, a concept product that Sun will ship in the future.
Persona is a fully customisable, Java-based desktop device that combines email, voicemail and fax.
Toshiba and Sun are in negotiation to collaborate on using Java for mobile workers and are expected to announce a deal to include Java tools on Toshiba notebooks.
Java PC, the Java port for Dos intended to convert legacy 386 and 486 computers into thin Java clients, has entered beta testing.
Infrastructure provider says international sales now make up 51 per cent of its revenue
Suzanne Chappell of TMS plans sailing venture after selling Oxfordshire-based TMS to acquisitive Chess
Withdrawal of credit insurance by some providers a 'reflection' of current challenge facing IT sector, according to MD Steve Soper
SMART's UK managing director joins Lenovo to boost SMB business