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Sun Microsystems introduced Java as a programming language and computing platform in 1995. From humble origins, it has grown to power a substantial portion of today’s digital world by offering a dependable foundation on which numerous services and applications are built. Java is still used in the development of new, innovative goods and digital services for the future. Many apps, and even some websites, will not operate without Java installed.
Most back-end development projects, especially those requiring large data and Android development, employ Java as the server-side language. Java is also widely used in the desktop computer, mobile computing, gaming, and numerical computing.
What Will be the Future of Java?
- This article provides an overview of the language and platform enhancements occurring in OpenJDK, as well as what the future holds for Java technologies and how the landscape may evolve with the advent of new Java LTS versions. Java as a language is steered forward by a succession of JDK enhancement proposals, as we discuss in detail in this breakdown of the JDK enhancement process. The scope of these ideas varies, but most developers consider them to be modest adjustments. However, some improvements, such as Lambdas in Java 8, can significantly alter the purpose and utility of Java.
- Reviewing continuing language enhancements via JEPs and framing them within the wider framework of OpenJDK initiatives is the most straightforward approach to tracing how Java is progressing as a language and platform. So far, Project Amber has been the main driver of language modifications in this current release cycle. Project Amber is responsible for several language enhancements, including Text Blocks, Local-variable type inference, and Switch expressions. Other larger projects are in the pipeline, bringing with them modifications to the language and API. Project Panama aims to increase Java’s interoperability with non-Java APIs, whereas Project Loom aims to improve asynchronous programming approaches in the language and platform. As we’ll see below, Project Valhalla is working on Java value types.
- Brian Goetz is the leader of Initiative Valhalla, an OpenJDK project. One of the project’s main goals is to investigate and incubate new JVM capabilities, particularly value types, or inline classes as they are currently known. “Codes like a class, operates like an int!” says inline classes. This refers to data types that are purely value-based and do not have an identity. The primitive types are the eight kinds that Java presently has. In Java, every other type is a reference type with a unique identity. Brian Goetz’s “Condition of Valhalla” provides an in-depth look at the present state of Project Valhalla.
- Although inline classes expand the language’s capabilities, the Java motto of compatibility makes implementation difficult, and Valhalla has gone through multiple prototype implementations over the last five years. Because inline classes have no identity, they may be regarded as any other value, copied, and flattened in an array for denser storage and elimination of reference indirection. Some current Java types will very certainly be changed to inline classes, and generics will be expanded to accept inline classes, allowing you to have a List<int> for the first time.
- Project Leyden is a recent project that has been discussed. Oracle’s Mark Reinhold is working on a project that aims to improve Java performance issues. The project focuses on Java’s “slow startup time, long time to peak performance, and huge footprint.” Leyden focuses on these areas by compiling a static image ahead of time-based on existing JDK components (not GraalVM components) and only include the files that are strictly required for execution. The Project Leyden discussion goes on to explain how to switch between Leyden static images (for JDK), Native Images (for GraalVM), and additional conforming static image implementations when they become available. While Project Leyden may not materialise (it might be merged into another project, abandoned, or refocused completely), it provides provide insight into how Java’s future will be developed. And, while it’s less essential in terms of market share for non-LTS versions, it’s still crucial.
- Other changes to the Java technology ecosystem might be seismic, affecting technologies in all programming languages. With big data and a flawless user experience becoming the new normal, IT businesses must innovate to meet these demands, or risk becoming obsolete.
- For development teams, adopting OpenJDK might be a difficult task. On the one hand, new capabilities in recent JDK versions can assist developers in making their programmes more efficient and scalable. On the other side, changing an application’s codebase for migration comes at a high cost, and updating to a non-LTS version of OpenJDK isn’t feasible for many teams. As more people abandon Java 8, OpenJDK use will increase.
- The termination of free, long-term support for Java 8 may be the most important reason pushing OpenJDK adoption right now. JDK 8 downstream releases, such as Corretto 8, continue to provide this capability. Paid choices, such as OpenLogic, offer ongoing bug and security updates.
- Java 8 and Java 11 are the latest Java LTS versions. JDK 17, the next anticipated LTS version, will be released in September 2021. Previous Java LTS versions in Java 8 and Java 11 account for over 80% of Java users, according to the current Java developer poll. Prior to Java 11, the LTS version was Java 8.
- Java 8, which was released in March of 2014, is used by almost 58 per cent of those who responded to the study.
- The most recent long-term support version of Java is Java 11, which was released in September of 2018. It accounts for a little over 22% of the developers polled.
- Java 17 will be the next LTS Java version. The release of Java 17 is scheduled for September 2021.
- As support for historical Java versions ends, many development teams will transition their programmes to newer Java LTS versions. However, there are alternative Java long-term support choices.
- Non-LTS OpenJDK versions and obsolete LTS versions are supported by OpenLogic for a fee (among many other open-source technologies).
- If developers want to stick to Java SE 8, or another Java SE version, they may get support and upgrades for up to 8 years by purchasing a Java SE subscription.
- For LTS, Amazon Corretto adopted a new method. Amazon Corretto alleviates some of the financial hardship of sustaining an obsolete JDK by providing a downstream distribution of Java 8 and Java 11 with free long-term maintenance. However, it still necessitates a migration and lacks functionality supported by later JDK versions.
- The newest OpenJDK and OpenJDK distributions are supported by JRebel and XRebel.
Is It Worth Learning Java in 2022?
Yes, studying Java in 2022 is worthwhile since it is simple to learn, adaptable, and one of the most popular programming languages. The Java API is a great development framework, and it’s frequently the first application that coders and developers learn.
Things Java Developers Should Learn in 2022
This will assist you in developing your objectives for 2022. Staying updated is the most challenging component of being a developer. Every year, a new version of your favourite programming language and framework is released, and technology evolves at a fast speed. The last several years have brought a host of new features and challenges to Java developers, including a new Java version every six months, Spring 5, Spring Security 5, and Spring Boot 2, to mention a few. Here’s a quick outline of what a Java developer in 2022 should know:
- Git- Git and Github
- Java 9–17-
- Spring Framework 6
- Unit testing
- RESTful Web Service
- Spring Security 5.0
- Spring Boot 2
- Angular 2+ or React JS
- Apache Spark and Kafka
- Docker and Kubernetes
- Cloud (AWS)
- Advanced Java concepts such as synchronizers included in Java 5 and later versions, such as CyclicBarrier, CountDownLatch, Phaser, and CompleteableFuture, as well as Futures and how to do async operations in Java, should also be learned.
Tech Trends that Foretell the Future of Java
Although programming languages come and go, few can match Java’s popularity and endurance. This tendency is expected to continue through 2022 and beyond. The top five reasons why Java is the best language to learn in 2022 are listed below.
- Why is Java still so popular over 30 years after its inception? Java is a well-rounded programming language with a large library of libraries that may be utilised to address difficult programming challenges. Java provides an unrivalled blend of speed, productivity, and observability. It’s the best solution for applications that demand excellent performance and security, as well as long-term maintenance and a large developer community with in-depth platform expertise. Java was created from the ground up to be a user-friendly language capable of solving difficult issues in a highly networked environment, which is exactly what current corporate systems demand.
- In China, 99 per cent of consumers prefer to access the internet via a mobile phone, which is almost always powered by Java. Because China’s internet was late to emerge, consumers were more likely to surf on a smartphone rather than a PC. Android smartphones account for over 80% of China’s mobile device market, with iOS devices accounting for around 20%. According to Trendforce, such percentages are unlikely to alter considerably in 2022. Android is a mobile operating system based on Google’s Java programming language. The demand for Android apps in China alone will provide a steady supply of Java developers in the next years.
- Java has proven to be a potent force for server-side computing thanks to popular APIs like the Servlet and JavaServer Page standard, or JSF. Java has become pervasive in the mobile industry due to the success of Android and the Java Virtual Machine-based languages that underpin it. Java is the appropriate choice for developing microservices as organisations shift SOA-based systems to the cloud, thanks to a range of sophisticated cloud-native frameworks like Spring Boot and the Eclipse MicroProfile. For organisations to provide and manage the lifecycles of their cloud-based resources, all of the main cloud computing providers — Amazon, Azure, Alibaba, Oracle, and Google — provide Java-based SDKs. Furthermore, Java frameworks such as Spring, Vaadin, and Eclipse enable businesses to build cloud-native apps that adhere to the 12-Factor App’s tenets by default. Many companies have invested extensively in the JVM and have had success with it on both the client and server sides. As businesses migrate their apps to the cloud, it makes sense for them to continue to invest in Java.
- Java is a mature, full-featured programming language with a six-month release cycle. Developers won’t have to wait long to try out Java’s newest features. Java 17, the first long-term-support release since Java 11, was released in September 2021. Developers may use new language capabilities like Java records to innovate, or they can use enhanced garbage collectors to increase application performance.
- While Java evolves, the language’s stewards work hard to ensure that code produced today compiles into bytecode that will operate on a server built in 2005. Java’s dedication to backward compatibility gives architects and designers peace of mind when deciding on a language that will meet their organization’s long-term goals. This is particularly true for large corporate initiatives that may be maintained and adjusted for an extended period. The aim to maintain backward compatibility often slows the addition of new features to the language, resulting in the Java language being criticised as being too slow to progress. Most businesses, on the other hand, are OK with the tradeoff between careful feature expansion and rapid innovation.
Few languages have remained popular for more than 30 years. However, as long as Java continues to innovate, be embraced, and establish itself as a successful language for development on several different programming fronts, there’s no reason to believe it won’t continue to be a dominating force in the software development industry for another 30 years and beyond. Download the Entri app for coding courses and excellent study materials.