For Al Hilwa, who covers software development for IDC, this long-term support, along with the "methodical evolution" of the language, is what gives Java its staying power.
"Using Java in Android was definitely something that has extended its life as a valuable skill-set and good Oracle governance in recent years has been helpful," Hilwa wrote in an e-mail. "The maturity of the technology ... should not be underestimated, especially when compared with the many dynamic languages that have become popular in recent years, though have not been able to exceed Java's adoption rate."
Oracle continues to move the language forward with these goals in mind. For the next major version of the language, Java 9, due in September 2016, the language's designers are reorganizing Java into a modular architecture.
The idea is to make Java more suitable for smaller devices, such as the expected wave of Internet of Things devices. "We want to subdivide it into modules so you can choose what you can use for your application," Reinhold said.
Such work may be instrumental in keeping Java vital for the next 20 years of computing.
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