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Wednesday, June 29, 2005
Java to Appear in Blu-Ray DVD Players

Sun Microsystems' Java technology will be built into Blu-ray DVD players, executives said on Monday, a development that advances the technology in the consumer electronics market for which Sun originally developed the software.

"The Blu-ray Disc Association, the standards body for the format, has decided it will adopt Java for the interactivity standards," said Yasushi Nishimura, director of Panasonic's Research and Development Company of America, speaking at Sun's JavaOne trade show here. "This means that all Blu-ray Disc player devices will be shipped equipped with Java."

Java will be used for control menus, interactive features, network services and games, Nishimura said.

Java is a software infrastructure that lets the same program run on a wide variety of computer systems. That can be useful for developers who have to deal with different foundations--Windows servers and mainframes, for example, or cell phones with different processors. In the case of devices such as DVD players, using Java means programmers won't have to worry about the chip or operating system in each player.

Sun Chief Executive Scott McNealy referred to the deal in an interview last week. "The new Blu-ray spec is going to put a Java virtual machine in every new next-generation DVD player, and all your DVDs are going to have Java bytecode on it that gets executed," he said.

The inclusion of Java in Blu-ray DVD drives will enable DVD updates over the network, Sun founder James Gosling said.

"Part of the DVD standard is the players have network ports out of the back," Gosling said. "That gives you the ability to download content. If somebody adds subtitles in Croatian, you don't have to bake those into the disc. You can do that afterwards."

More information is available at

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