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Just What is Java

Java is a highly portable computer programming language. "Portable" is a term used to describe programs that can be run in many different computing environments and on many different "platforms" (MS Windows, Apple's Mac OS, Solaris, and Linux are all examples of "platforms") It is Java's portability that makes it such an intriguing technology. To give you an example of how this portability relates to real world features and benefits, let's say you have a program that is written in Java such as a web browser. Normally, with a web browser application, the user is bound to the settings for the browser application and the configuration of the machine that they are using it on.

So, at the office, the machine on Joe User's desktop has one set of bookmarks, plug ins, security setting, etc. Joe's machine at home will most likely have a different set of bookmarks, plug ins and settings. Now, let's say Joe want to have a more consistent experience with the computers that he uses everyday. Joe could install a Java-based browser on removable writable media (such as a floppy diskette, pen drive, zip disk or CDRW) and carry his browser with him (with all the settings, bookmarks and plug ins in tow as well!) Java is not only portable, but it is also widely known, and does not need to be interpreted (like PHP, Java script and some other and other languages).

Java also does not have to be compiled on the machine it will be run on. Java can be compiled once and run in its binary form on many systems. Although there are other languages out there that are extremely portable, there are few that could stand up to Java's "compile once, run everywhere" functionality. Java is truly a useful and feature rich programming language and is used to program many software programs on the market today.

James Hunt has spent 15 years as a professional writer and researcher covering stories that cover a whole spectrum of interest. Read more at

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