Java 6 for Mac OS X Back on the Radar

Nearly two months on from the release of Mac OS X 10.5 (Leopard) and the resulting uproar from Java developers over Apple’s silent removal of preview builds of Java 6 for Mac, Apple has just as quietly released Java SE 6 Developer Preview 8, the first developer preview of Java 6 that runs on Leopard.

Many developers had feared that the removal of the previous preview signalled an intent from Apple to ignore Java 6 in favour of continued minor tweaks to Java 5. It seems now that the optimists were right: Apple just needed more time to get Java 6 right, so it took a step back and made some improvements to Java 5 for the Leopard release before pressing on with its work on Java 6.

The fact remains that if Apple were only to communicate with its closest allies—software developers—in a meaningful way, we wouldn’t be left playing these guessing games over the company’s intentions.

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