Sun Microsystems launched a portal site for its Java programming language on Tuesday as the company inches closer to making the Java code open source, a company executive said Tuesday.The website details the company\u2019s moves to open source the first bits of the Java Standard Edition implementation, known as the Java Development Kit, said Simon Phipps, Sun\u2019s chief open-source officer. It\u2019s also a forum for input on the best way to take Java to open source, he said."I don\u2019t think that I or any of the people in Sun\u2019s Java organization know how to take Java and make it into a successful open-source community," Phipps said. "We\u2019ve got ideas. We\u2019re fairly confident that it\u2019s possible, but we really need the advice and insight of the existing communities to help us get to that place."Sun\u2019s move to open-source Java is part of a broad company restructuring following replacement in April of cofounder Scott McNealy with Jonathan Schwartz as chief executive officer. Sun has undertaken several other open-source projects, including its OS with OpenSolaris and the open-source tools platform NetBeans.Sun hopes that open source will drive adoption of its software by making it easily available, according to a paper from Forrester Research authored by Michael Goulde and John Rymer.Phipps said Sun hasn\u2019t decided what part of the Java code will be released first. The code, however, will be released under a license approved by the Open Source Initiative, a nonprofit organization dedicated to open-source software. Java Micro Edition, a mobile platform, will also eventually be open source, Phipps said.Sun is sorting through the code to ensure it has the proper rights to make it open source. While the company created the Java code, Sun may not have the complete rights to all of it, Phipps said.Open sourcing Java won\u2019t have an immediate effect on Sun. The company, Phipps said, believes customers will pay for software only when they begin to get value from it. Java was designed to push Sun\u2019s system business, he said.Eventually, the open-source environment will mean faster fixes for bugs and fewer code defects, according to Phipps. The Java Community Process (JCP), Sun\u2019s organization for managing the code, should continue to have the same function, he said."At the moment, I don\u2019t see any necessary changes to the JCP," Phipps said.-Jeremy Kirk, IDG News Service (London Bureau)Check out our CIO News Alerts and Tech Informer pages for more updated news coverage.