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There's one form of power that is almost universally recognized in our society, the power of consumer spending. This is at the heart of all commerce, and anybody who tries to tell you otherwise must have something to sell you. I read today that more than 45 million American homes now have computers, and I'm sure that the number of computers used in businesses far exceeds that. I doubt that anyone will argue the fact that a lot of technology-driven consumer spending power is at work in our economy.

As a software developer you probably have significant influence over where some of this spending power is directed. The Java Lobby has started a new initiative in which you can exercise some of your influence to achieve a positive, proJava outcome. This initiative is called the "JavaReady PC Project," and you can learn all about it from the Java Lobby Web site at http://www.javalobby.org/javaready.

The "JavaReady PC Project" is a simple idea that does not depend on trustbusters, the courts or anything more complicated than your willingness to relate your support for Java to your own consumer spending decisions and to those that you influence. In short, you can help promote Java by favoring vendors that support Java. If computer resellers believe that supporting Java will give them an edge in their intensely competitive business, then they will definitely start supporting Java.

It's very easy for computer manufacturers to preload the hard drives of new computers with software that will help ensure a successful Java experience for their customers, and the required software is ABSOLUTELY FREE! If ever I heard of a win-win proposition, then this has got to be it. Savvy computer manufacturers install free Java software on the computers they sell, and that software makes those computers more attractive from your point of view as a consumer.

Now I know that some of you may be disappointed that this initiative does not involve any hot-headed accusations, name calling or other high-profile conflict of the sort that has become so common in the Java space. I apologize, and no doubt the mayhem will soon continue. This is an opportunity, however, for each and every one of us to make a difference by quietly leveraging the economic power that we control. It's not a matter of religion, nor is it a matter of which major company we might prefer to dominate the technology landscape. Instead, it is a simple and clear way to cast an economic vote for Java - a vote that will not be ignored.

So, if you want to support Java, then look for the JavaReady logo on the next PC you consider purchasing, and don't be afraid to speak up if you don't see this logo. Ask your preferred vendor to support Java by making their PC's JavaReady - and let them know that they may not remain your preferred vendor for long if they don't. It is so painlessly easy for vendors to make their PC's JavaReady that I can't think of any good reason why they wouldn't want to comply in order to win your business. The software is free, the Java Lobby has made it simple for them to get this free software, and they will save you unnecessary downloading time by pre-installing genuine, compatible Java before they ship your new system. Like many good ideas, this one is really simple - but it all depends on you.

Tell your friends, your family, your colleagues, tell everyone - but most important please tell your vendor "Make my new PC JavaReady!"

About the Author
Rick Ross is the President and founder of the Java Lobby (www.Javalobby.org), which currently has more than 17,700 members. He is also President of Activated Intelligence and can be reached at [email protected]


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