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Chapter 24. Using Java Applets, Browser ... > Java and Java Applets: An Overview

Java and Java Applets: An Overview

The Java programming language originally was designed and implemented as a language for programming consumer electronics. However, under the auspices of Sun Microsystems, it has been developed to be a general-purpose, high-level programming language—similar to C++. Java is not specifically oriented to Web programming, and standalone Java programs do not need to be run from inside a Web page. The latest release of the development environment is Java 2.

The language was designed to be platform independent and to have a high level of inherent runtime safety. In the case of the Web, it has been applied mostly in the form of Java applets . These are specialized Java programs designed for executing within Web pages. To run a Java applet, you need a Java-enabled Web browser; both Navigator 3 and later and Internet Explorer 3 and later fulfill this requirement. These browsers can download Java programs as specified in the page and then execute these programs on the user's computer by using the Java virtual machine that is integrated into the browser software.


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