While many claims and promises of the dot-com boom have come and gone, the boom did initiate a tremendous amount of network and software innovation, and did push the Internet into mainstream business. One example of Internet innovation is the Java programming language, which was designed specifically with networking in mind and is capable of dealing with security and parallel distributed computing issues while maintaining portability. Java has seen the most rapid explosion in number of developers in the history of computer science: three million developers in five years.

Internet technology hit “critical mass” faster than any new technology in...

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