Train held

Java 8 now set for Spring 2014 release

Chris Mayer
lambda1

It’s official. Mark Reinhold, the Java platform’s Chief Architect, has announced that JDK 8 will arrive 18 March 2014.

It’s official – the next major version of Java is now scheduled
to arrive on 18 March 2014, six months late than originally
planned.

Last week, Chief
Architect Mark Reinhold explained that JDK 8 would likely be delayed
after priority was placed on the security of the Java platform,
amidst browser security problems. Members of the JDK 8 team were
drawn in to patch the platform, which in part caused features to
slip from M6, pushing back the Developer Preview of JDK 8.

Many of the unfinished features are
within Project Lambda, the centrepiece of the release which finally
adds closures to the language. With so much riding on this feature,
Reinhold decided the best course of action would be to “stop the
train” to allow Project Lambda time to catch up.

“This option would not open the gates for a
flood of new features in Java 8, nor would it permit the scope of
existing features to grow without bound,” Reinhold explained last
week. “We’d likely add a select few additional features, especially
in areas related to security. In general, however, we’d use the
additional time to stabilize, polish, and fine-tune the features
that we already have rather than add a bunch of new
ones.”

Reinhold thanked those who commented on the
news
in his latest
blog
, intimating that “feedback was generally in
favour, though understandably tinged with
disappointment.”

The updated schedule means that a feature
complete JDK 8 (M7) will be available on May 23,

before a Developer Preview arrives on September
5th. This should pave the way for a Final Release Candidate next
January
ahead of Java 8 goes GA in
March.

If you’ve been following development closely,
Java 8’s pushback was expected and although it tarnishes Oracle’s
reputation in terms of delivering on time, it is the correct
decision. You could also argue it was the only option with Project
Lambda being the driving feature of the release. More damaging
however is Java’s security woes, which continue to be a thorn in
the side for Java’s guardian, as well as bad press.

Image courtesy of Yoyoyopo5

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