7 reasons Java is not heading to retirement

Despite its industry age, here are seven top reasons Java is not headed into retirement anytime soon.


Despite its industry age, here are seven top reasons Java is not headed into retirement anytime soon.

Three billion devices currently run on Java, according to Oracle, the billion-dollar computer tech corporation that champions the platform. But even with its worldwide popularity, skeptics challenge the ability for Java to retain its predominance. However, arguments for modernization don’t always translate into “out with the old and in with the new.”

Old isn’t synonymous with antiquated. If this were the case, the wine industry would have never gotten off the ground. Like fine wine, the Java platform just keeps getting better with age.

Java entered the scene in 1995 and offered an unparalleled software code reuse tool. Its object-oriented programming language streamlined state and local governments, empowering the internet web application revolution via Java and Java EE for private and public enterprises around the globe. Now, two decades later, Java is still the No. 1 development platform worldwide.

Despite its industry age, here are seven top reasons Java is not headed into retirement anytime soon.

Java has worldwide popularity 

Programming languages are judged in popularity and demand by a largely accepted industry survey called the TIOBE index. Despite the rate of innovation and change, the index shows that Java is, and has been, the most popular programming language over the last 15 years. But Java is more than just a programming language; it’s a platform. Its ability to adapt and remain dynamic against its incumbent and new comer programming languages and has made it the flagship in the development world and secures its place for years to come.

According to statistics from GoJava , Java has the No. 1 platform for cloud development. Second, it has 10 million developers worldwide. Third, there are 15 billion devices running it and fourth, there are 5 million students that study it.

Java sustains and supplies our digital world 

GoJava put it this way: “Java is at the heart of our digital lifestyle. It’s the platform for launching careers, exploring human-to-digital interfaces, architecting the world’s best applications, and unlocking innovation everywhere — from garages to global organizations.”

Java’s ability to develop locally is a large part of its success. The substantial supply of commercial and open source libraries makes Java more accessible and more portable than any other. As a bytecode language, Java provides cross-platform portability for compiled libraries where others can’t. Java’s portability allows it to function consistently across a range of computer architectures from smartphones to high-end servers.

Java is the base for the world’s No. 1 mobile platform

The No. 1 mobile platform today is Google’s Android technology. The Android mobile platform relies on Java-run apps and infrastructure to keep it competitive. JavaWorld reports that Android captured nearly 62 percent of tablet sales worldwide in 2013, followed by Apple’s iOS with a 36 percent share, according to Gartner. Android had nearly 82 percent of the smartphone market worldwide. This level of market share establishes Java as a mainstay in mobile application development.

Java provides unparalleled reliability, speed and performance 

Internet users in the 21st century expect relevancy, real-time information and split-second results. Why is speed such a necessity? Consider this Twitter case study offered by GoJava.com. Twitter’s migration from Ruby on Rails to the JVM infrastructure made it possible to support the massive quantities of tweets it broadcasts each day.

According to Internet Live Stats, “Every second, on average, around 6,000 tweets are tweeted on Twitter which corresponds to over 350,000 tweets sent per minute, 500 million tweets per day and around 200 billion tweets per year.” Java Just-In-Time compiled code on modern Java Virtual Machine software allows Java to remain one of the fastest language/implementation combinations available.

Java supports billions of lines of code across major corporations

Java owns industry support worldwide by tech giants such as Google, Oracle, IBM, the Apache Software Foundation, Facebook, Spotify, eBay and more. Roughly 90 percent of Fortune 500 companies use Java according to Infoworld data. It is also deeply rooted in banks, media and local, state and federal government.

Java offers backward compatibility

Java developers have dedicated considerable time and effort to securing Java’s ability to consistently run across each new iteration. Code written for a particular version of Java will perform without hiccups across newer versions. This consistency allows Java to remain malleable for developers. The efficiency this allows developers encourages investment support in the Java platform. No one wants to rewrite code every time a new version is released.

Java has the ability to evolve

The brilliance behind Java is its ability to support several languages across its platform. The success of languages such as Clojure and Scala forecast future achievement. The Java platform pioneers trend-setting innovation because of its flexibility. Java has evolved into a functional programming language while simultaneously incorporating direct support for cloud computing and enlisting its embedded-device roots.

The Java Community Process (JCP) supports Java’s dynamic nature. The JCP is a system that invites members—both individuals and commercial entities—to establish standard technical specifications for Java technology. The JCP incorporates the use of Java Specification Requests (JSRs) — formal documents that detail prospective specifications and technologies for adding to the Java platform. After a public review process, and a vote by the JCP Executive Committee, a final JSR delivers a free reference implementation of the technology, in source code form, along with a Technology Compatibility Kit to authenticate the API specification.

While some may call the JCP slow, it also delivers some significant standardization and community creation that doesn’t exist elsewhere. Creativity is the lifeblood of innovation.

Despite its industry age, Java is still a widely used and popular programming language and it doesn’t look like it will be going away anytime soon.

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