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The term “Java” can be applied to Sun’s Java platform or to its Java programming language. The Java platform is made up of a set of technologies that provide cross-platform, network-centric computing solutions. The programming language is simply one aspect of the Java platform. The elements of the Java platform include the Java Virtual Machine (JVM), which provides a uniform Java byte code emulator for Java’s cross-platform runtime environment; the Java programming language, which provides a robust, object-oriented language for constructing Java components and applications; and the standard Java-class library packages, which provide sets of reusable services that promote consistency among components and applications.

The Java programming language is based on C and extends and complements the basic capabilities of HTML. Java permits the creation of applications and application modules (called “applets”) that run in the JVM on the browser. Browsers from Netscape and Microsoft have a JVM. Java’s platform independence and security are designed in, rather than added on, so applications can run on a wide variety of desktop platforms as long as they can run a Java-enabled browser.

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