It seems that Oracle is buying Sun. This must be great news for some guys in the Java EE side of the Sun, as well as for a bunch of server specialists. Client-side Java people, focused on consumer devices, must be more worried about the move; they were already not really dominant within Sun, and things aren’t going to get better within Oracle.
What about Java Card? Well, now is the right time to give a new light on Java Card. There has been a tendency to label the Java Card technology as a consumer technology, just because a smart card is a small token, which usually sits in the pocket of end users. That may be true, but there is another vision of it: customers don’t own the smart cards in their pockets; a smart card remains the property of its issuer. And if you think of a smart card with the issuer’s mind, you can think of it either as a single customer record in a very large database, or as an authentication token that authorizes the user to access a database. In both cases, it is actually server technology.
Java Card 3.0 actually confirms that, as we propose servlets rather than MIDlets or other client-side APIs. A Java Card 3.0 application is quite likely to be a local part of a much larger server infrastructure, and I am quite convinced that even Oracle can find some value there.
We’ll see. I am not sure that next week’s Java Card Forum meeting will bring much news, but JavaOne will definitely be interesting.