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Just Java™ 2 by Peter van der Linden

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Some Light Relief—Early Names for Java

When Shakespeare wrote “A rose by any other name would smell as sweet” (Romeo and Juliet, Act II, Sc 1), he hadn't seen the effects of modern marketing, consumer branding, and product positioning. Names are incredibly important to the positioning of a product. First impressions count for way too much, and (you'll be horrified to learn) people do indeed judge books by their covers.

Names sometimes arise from the most fortuitous of circumstances. Linus Torvalds (himself named after two-time Nobel laureate Linus Pauling) planned to call Linux “Freax” because it was free and freaky. But his friend Ari Lemmke gave him an FTP directory called /pub/OS/Linux, and the name stuck. While still at college, Red ...

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