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ComputerWire: IT Industry Intelligence

Sun Microsystems Inc is assuming command in Java's battle against Microsoft Corp and .NET, dismissing IBM as a potential contender.

The Santa Clara, California-based company's executive vice president for marketing and business development Mark Tolliver was last week reported to have said the platform market has narrowed to two contenders - Java and .NET.

"It's a competition for the hearts and minds of the software developer community," he told Business Week magazine in an interview.

IBM, Tolliver said, lacks Sun's innovative ideas and "simply proposes alternatives to the things we do on a tactical basis" Tolliver said Sun had competed "extraordinarily" well on the basis of Java and growth.

"As far as Microsoft, we will never take a company lightly that can put $3bn in cash in the bank every quarter. But the fact is there are 2m to 3m developers today that use Java, far more than the number using .NET development tools," he said.

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