Java is an object-oriented language similar to C++ yet has added features that simplify the coding process and contains advanced functions. C# and Java are also similar languages, and both are object-oriented, designed with semi-interpretation or runtime just-in-time compilation.
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Java was created by a Sun Microsystems team headed by James Gosling back in the early 1990s. The first version, Java 1.0 hit the screens on 1996, and it was designed for internet coding. As such, it provided interactivity between the user and the internet through dynamic pages.
Since version 1.0 came out, many upgrades have evolved, and the latest version released in 2018 is Java 11.
Simple and easy to use
Java has a lot of benefits that make it stand out from C++which was the origins of Java. C++, however, lacked in certain internet demands and its syntax was complicated. Java approached this by simplifying the syntax and adding functionality that was focused on dynamic page web design.
Java was the original OOP, (object-oriented programming) language, and this reduced fatal errors during programming. OOP allows functions to be packaged into one place, making the system modular, reliable and easy to build. OOP provides libraries and libraries provide functionality that has been proven and tested.
Since Java was created to handle internet programming, especially for mobile devices, it was built with a lot of cyber-security features in place. In fact, today, Java is still the leading programming language for secure applications.
Java is designed to perform on any platform and with any operating system. As such, there is a lot of versatility allowing programmers to design applications that will work on many different devise, platforms and OS simultaneously.
The main components used in Java include:
JVM (Java Virtual Machine)
JVM is an abstract machine that acts as a specification providing a run-time environment for Java bytecode execution. JVM has three notations:
Specification: This is a document that describes the JVM implementation of the Java virtual machine.
Implementation: This is the JVM specified program.
Runtime Instance: Whenever you write a java command on the command prompt and run the class an instance of JVM is created.
JRE (Java Runtime Environment)
JRE is a runtime environment where you execute Java bytecode. It implements the JVM providing all the runtime class libraries and other support files. As such, JRE is a software package containing the requirements to run a Java program. This is a physical implementation of the JVM.
JDK (Java Development Kit)
This is the tool that compiles, documents and packages the Java programs.
The JDK houses the JRE that houses the tools for Java programmers. The JDK is free and with the JRE, gives you the interpreter/loader, a compiler (javac), an archiver (jar), a documentation generator (Javadoc). It also provides other tools needed in Java development.
Java SE 11
JDK 11 was released on September 25, 2018, and will be replaced by Java SE 12 in March 2019. IN the meanwhile, the additional Java features that were added, and a few that were removed are:
JEP 309: Dynamic class-file constants
JEP 318: Epsilon: a no-op garbage collector
JEP 323: Local-variable syntax for lambda parameters
JEP 331: Low-overhead heap profiling
JEP 321: HTTP client (standard)
JEP 332: Transport Layer Security (TLS) 1.3
JEP 328: Flight recorder
JEP 333: ZGC: a scalable low-latency garbage collector
JavaFX, Java EE and CORBA modules have been removed from JDK
Among the dropped features are:
Java Web Start
One amazing fact about Android is that it uses a lot of Java, and this supports the main code written in C. Android SDK uses Java as its base for all Android applications. However, the Android SDK bytecode language runs on its own VM which is designed to run on low-memory devices. As such, Android mobile devices use either the Dalvik VM or compile the code in the Android Runtime.