Java was started as a project called "Oak". Gosling's goals were to implement a virtual machine and a language that had a familiar C-like notation but with greater uniformity and simplicity than C/C++. The first public implementation was Java 1.0 in 1995. It made the promise of "Write Once, Run Anywhere" (WORA), free runtimes on popular platforms. It was fairly secure and its security was configurable, allowing for network and file access to be limited. The major web browsers soon incorporated it into their standard configurations in a secure "applet" configuration. It became popular quickly. New versions for large and small platforms (J2EE and J2ME) soon were designed with the advent of "Java 2". Sun has announced plans for a "Java 6".
In 1997, Sun approached the ISO/IEC JTC1 standards body and later the Ecma International to formalize Java, but it soon withdrew from the process. Java remains a proprietary de facto standard that is controlled through the Java Community Process . Sun makes most of its Java implementations available freely, with revenue being generated by specialized products such as Java Enterprise System. Sun distinguishes between its Software Development Kit (SDK) and Runtime Time Environment (JRE) which is a subset of the SDK, the primary distinction being that the compiler is not present.
The Sun Java SDK is freely available and it is the language often used in introductory computer programming courses.