Tim Peierls was the only independent member of the Java Community Process Executive Committee. Yesterday, he quit.
“Today I resigned from the SE/EE Executive Committee of the Java Community Process,” Peierls said in a blog post. “I lasted about a year before giving up hope that the ECs would ever do anything meaningful.
The last straw for me was Oracle’s failure to address the ambiguous licensing terms in JSRs 336 and 337 (the Java SE7/8 umbrella JSRs) before the EC had to vote on them. At first I abstained, but I was so dismayed by Oracle’s silence that I changed my vote to No, joining the Apache Software Foundation and Google.”
Peierls wasn’t opposed to the technical aspects of the JSRs, he said that both are “good projects that will ultimately be beneficial to the Java language and libraries.”
But he’s come to realize that maybe Java doesn’t need to keep growing, at least not from the perspective of the independent Java programmers he was representing on the committee.
“I’m coming to believe something heretical,” he explained, “that it actually is not all that crucial for Java to move forward, at least not to the constituency I felt that I represented on the EC, the tens of thousands of Java developers who don’t work for a big company with an Oracle contract.
The big boys want big apparent forward motion because it means more stuff to sell, more contracts and control. As a result, we are whipped to a frenzy with messages (both subliminal and explicit) that Java is falling behind, losing mind-share, being lapped by C#, anything to sell the idea that more is desperately needed, when in fact most folks could make do with a lot less.”