Community Unworried

Oracle’s Stewardship of Java and MySQL

Jessica Thornsby

JasperSoft publish their findings of a survey into the community’s perception of Java and MySQL under Oracle.

JasperSoft have released the results of a survey (pdf) that aimed to identify the market perception of Oracle’s newfound stewardship of MySQL and Java. More than 130,000 registered JasperSoft users and customers were quizzed during the first three weeks of April 2010. The results were, overall, surprisingly positive.

Over three quarters of respondents said their use of MySQL would increase or remain consistent under Oracle, while three quarters believed that MySQL development would continue at the same pace, or improve under Oracle. When it comes to Java, the perception of Oracle as the new steward is, again, a positive one. Nearly 80% of respondents believed that the Java Community Process would be unchanged by the acquisition, while “almost every respondent” planned to continue, or increase, their use of Java.

The survey then goes one step further, and suggests that the acquisition could even result in an upsurge in Java adoption. This is because Oracle’s revenue has been traditionally higher than Sun Microsystem’s – according to JasperSoft, in 2009 Oracle had 10 times the net income of Sun. Therefore, the assumption amongst the community is that Oracle has the potential to invest much more heavily in Java, if it views Java as crucial to its own commercial strategy.

“The good news for Oracle, and for the future of Java and MySQL, is that our survey respondents are largely giving Oracle the benefit of the doubt, for now,” concludes the survey.

Curt Monash, analyst at Monash Research, sees sense in JasperSoft’s findings: “from an individual user organization’s standpoint, Oracle is innocent with respect to MySQL until proven guilty. Having MySQL be owned by a real [database] vendor is grounds for optimism about MySQL product evolution.”

However, not everyone is so sure of MySQL’s future under Oracle. MySQL creator Michael “Monty” Widenius has developed a MySQL fork – MariaDB – after leading a petition against the takeover, prior to Oracle’s acquisition of Sun Microsystem.


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