Sun said developers can now download version 1.4 of J2SE (Java2 Standard Edition), which provides a set of specifications for developers to follow when writing Java applications. Vendors such as Oracle, IBM and BEA Systems develop software based on the Java specifications, which are also used by large corporations to develop custom applications.
Compared to the previous version of J2SE, Sun is promoting the update as a platform that can be used to build higher-performance applications such as those used for large-scale data mining, business intelligence and scientific computing.
Version 1.4 includes built-in support for XML as well as new input/output technologies and use with 64-bit processors, Sun said. Coupled with its Web Services Developer Pack, which supports standards such as Simple Object Access Protocol and Universal Description and Discovery Integration, version 1.4 provides developers with tools to begin testing and deploying Web services, Sun said.
Version 1.4 is also the first version of J2SE to be developed and submitted through the Java Community Process, which oversees the development of Java. As part of the process, 39 software vendors that build products based on Java were able to give input on new features, Sun said.
In addition to J2SE, Sun has created a more complex version of the architecture for servers, called Java2 Enterprise Edition (J2EE), version 1.3 of which was recently announced. The company also offers Java2 Micro Edition (J2ME), which Sun pitches for use in mobile phones, gaming machines and other gadgets.
J2SE version 1.4 for Windows, Linux and Solaris can be downloaded free of charge at http://java.sun.com/j2se/1.4.