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what has changed in javaSE since 2005?

Randall Twede
Ranch Hand

Joined: Oct 21, 2000
Posts: 4351

i have been out of the loop for too long. the last version of java i used was java2. i can't just look up what is new in java6. if someone could give me the highlights of whats been happening since we first had swing i would appreciate it ;^)

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Campbell Ritchie

Joined: Oct 13, 2005
Posts: 46435
Do a search for "difference java 5 java 6" and you get a few old threads: No 1, No 2,No 3.
See whether those old threads are any help to you.

Of course Java 7 comes out in two weeks; we have a forum devoted to that.
Randall Twede
Ranch Hand

Joined: Oct 21, 2000
Posts: 4351

oh ok. so its still java 2, just new releases. so its not like the change from java 1 to java 2?
i thought it seemed strange to go from java 2 to java 6, 7 and 8 so quickly.
Ulf Dittmer

Joined: Mar 22, 2005
Posts: 42965
Um, yeah, the changes from Java 2 to Java 6 or 7 are much bigger than those from Java 1 to Java 2.

Summary of New Features Java 1.3

Enhancements and Changes in J2SE 1.4

New Features and Enhancements Java 1.5

Java SE 6 Features and Enhancements

java 7:
Jesper de Jong
Java Cowboy
Saloon Keeper

Joined: Aug 16, 2005
Posts: 15101

Note the version numbering:

There was Java 1.0. Then there was Java 1.1. Then, for whatever reason, someone at Sun decided to call the next version "Java 2" (or "J2SE" - Java 2 Standard Edition), while the JDK had version number 1.2. There were no radical changes in the language between Java 1.1 and Java 2 (which was really version 1.2).

Then there was "J2SE version 1.3" and later 1.4. After that, they changed the numbering again, so it became J2SE 5.0 (JDK version 1.5), then Java SE 6 (JDK 1.6) and at the end of this month a new version is coming out: Java SE 7 (JDK version 1.7).

Don't read too much in the version numbers; it looks like you think there was some radical, incompatible change between "Java 1" and "Java 2". That's not the case.

See: Java version history

Java Beginners FAQ - JavaRanch SCJP FAQ - The Java Tutorial - Java SE 8 API documentation
Randall Twede
Ranch Hand

Joined: Oct 21, 2000
Posts: 4351

thanks for the links ulf.
i guess im just getting lazy in my old age ;^)
Jeanne Boyarsky
author & internet detective

Joined: May 26, 2003
Posts: 33132

For the stuff you use on a day to day basis, the features introduced in Java 4 (regular expressions) and Java 5 (generics, foreach, etc) are more important than new features in Java 6.

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Pat Farrell

Joined: Aug 11, 2007
Posts: 4659

Or that will be in Java 7
Randall Twede
Ranch Hand

Joined: Oct 21, 2000
Posts: 4351

i'm still going through the links Ulf posted for me, but so far java5 seems to have the most important changes to the language section. some very nice changes at that
I agree. Here's the link:
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