Sun's $3 Million Scholarship Fund Provides No-Cost Access to Sun's Technology Compatibility Support Services

8/14/2002 - Sun Microsystems formed a $3 million scholarship program to help fund access by not-for-profit Open Source developers to Sun's JavaTM technology support services. Sun is establishing the program to help ensure that the cost of the rigorous compatibility testing process is not a barrier for qualified individuals, not-for-profit organizations, and universities and to encourage new innovative implementations of Java technology.

"Sun recognizes the value of Open Source efforts under way around the world, and this new compatibility testing scholarship program will help developers build compatible Open Source implementations of Java technology," said Rob Gingell, chief engineer at Sun and chair of the Java Community ProcessSM (JCPSM). "The Java community benefits from the increased innovation and energy that comes from increasing the population and diversity of those creating compatible implementations of Java technologies."

Under the compatibility testing scholarship program, an independent review board of three, including Rob Gingell, chair of the JCP, Ben Laurie, board member of the Apache Software Foundation, and Doug Lea, professor of computer science at the State University of New York at Oswego, will oversee the fund and determine eligibility of applicants. The program will be available for 30 efforts per year (current value of approximately $1 million per year) for 3 years. The review board may also grant access to Java compatibility test suites at no cost without support services to qualified efforts. The Board will vote on a simple majority basis within approximately one month after application.

"This program gives academics and researchers the chance to certify the compatibility of implementations that originally stem from experimental research projects and open source efforts," said Doug Lea, of the State University of New York at Oswego. "The program removes the expense from compatibility testing by these groups, and so encourages them to invest the hard work in bringing implementations up to spec."

The formation of the compatibility testing scholarship program comes a time when the JCP is also revising the Java Specification Participation Agreement (JSPA) to enable developers to build Open Source implementations of JavaTM Specification Requests (JSR). Sun has already embraced the spirit of the new JSPA and is modifying key existing JSRs, including a number of completed JSRs, to reflect the new Open Source compatible agreement, currently being revised in the JCP as JSR 99. Sun has been working with the JCP Executive Committee members, including the Apache Software Foundation, for more than a year to update the JSPA and to enhance the relationship between the Java community and the Open Source community. The new agreements were originally proposed at JavaOne 2002 in San Francisco based on significant contributions from the Apache Software Foundation, the Java community, and Sun.

"We're happy that the promises Sun made at JavaOne in March have been fulfilled," said Jason Hunter, vice president and JCP Representative, Apache Software Foundation. "We look forward to faster, easier and fully compatible development of Java specifications by Open Source groups."

Sun has created Linux support for all versions of the Java platform. Sun is also a major part of the Open Source community ( and has created successful development communities around many software technologies, including, Project Jxta, NetBeansTM, and SunTM Grid Engine. Additionally, Sun is a leader in open standards efforts and has made specifications available to developers on a royalty-free basis, such as XML Pipeline and Web Services Choreography Interface.

Developers can access additional scholarship information and application documents at

About Sun Microsystems(
Since its inception in 1982, a singular vision — "The Network Is The ComputerTM" — has propelled Sun Microsystems, Inc. (Nasdaq: SUNW) to its position as a leading provider of industrial-strength hardware, software and services that make the Net work. Sun can be found in more than 170 countries. Sun, Sun Microsystems, the Sun logo, JCP, NetBeans, Java and all Java-based marks are trademarks or registered trademarks of Sun Microsystems, Inc. in the United States and other countries.

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