History of Java

Sun Microsystems first introduced Java in 1995. The project was started in the lab of Sun Microsystems by James Gosling, Mike Sheridan, Patrick Naughton. There were more people in the team, but these three were main. The name of this team was the Green Team.

The first version’s name was the Java Alpha Beta version in 1995. Java Development Kit, also called JDK, was first introduced in 1996. When Sun Microsystems released the first version of Java in 1996, it was called JDK 1.0, and the code name for this project was OAK. The OAK word was taken from the name of OAK Tree. The picture of the OAK tree is shown below.

OAK Tree

The developers used this name because they had a vision of this language in mind. As you can see in the image, the tree has a lot of branches vertically. They imagined using this language, and they thought it should be so useful that it could be used in several branches of the computer field. But they did not think the language would be as popular as it is today.

How the Icon of Java Chosen

You may have also seen the icon of Java. The icon of Java is a cup with some smoke over it. The first version of Java was released in 1995, but the developers did not create the language in a couple of days. The project was started in 1991, and the first version was released in 1995, which means they did backbreaking work for 4 years in a row. During this period, they worked day and night, and a few drinks were helping them a lot, Coffee and Tea. They were drinking too much coffee, and tea and the cup was always on their workstations.

When they changed the name from OAK to Java, they made the iconic java symbol.

Slogan of Java

When they delivered Java, they promised WORA. WORA stands for Write Once and Run Anywhere. They wanted to make Java available for all kinds of platforms. So they developed JVM, which is called Java Virtual Machine. JVM was designed to be installed on all kinds of platforms, Linux, Windows, Mac. JVM was working as an interpreter between the Java program and the host machine. JVM gave Java a runtime environment. This feature made java so useful that it made Java extremely popular in a concise span of time.

They also made JDK available for all platforms. JDK stands for Java development kit.

Difference Between JVM, JRE, and JDK

Some people get confused about JVM, JRE, and JDK. They do not understand the difference. Let me explain it to you.

  • JDK = JRE + Java Development tools.
  • JRE = JVM + Java Libraries
  • JVM is just a compiler that compiles the code line by line.

JDK is used by Java developers who develop java program and run it on their own systems. To do this, they need JDK, which is JRE + Java Libraries. Java libraries are the files needed to develop the java program.

JRE is used to run a Java program, and it is not responsible for providing the facility to develop a Java program. JRE is required on the machine which will run a Java program. For example – When a developer develops a java program and sends it to the client. The client needs JRE on his computer to run it.

JVM is just a compiler, and it can not do anything alone. It always works with Java libraries and provides the environment to run java programs. JVM is just a component of JRE.

Java Versions Since it is Launched

Java VersionCode NameRelease Date
Java Beta1995
JDK 1.0 OAK January 1996
JDK 1.1 None February 1997
J2SE 1.2 Playground December 1998
J2SE 1.3 KestrelMay 2000
J2SE 1.4 Merlin February 2002
J2SE 5.0 TigerSeptember 2004
Java SE 6 MustangDecember 2006
Java SE 7 DolphinJuly 2011
Java SE 8 (LTS) SpiderMarch 2014
Java SE 9 September 2017
Java SE 10 March 2018
Java SE 11 (LTS) September 2018
Java SE 12 March 2019
Java SE 13 September 2019

So there you have it. Now you know the history of Java. How, Where, and who started developing the Java. When it was in the development phase, the team did not think it would be as famous today. They kept a few things in mind; Java should be fastest, portable, and platform-independent. It was intended to write programs for consumers electronics such as VCRs, Toasters, and other small electronics you can buy on the departmental store. No one knew one day it would be a giant.