Somehow we need to get Jonathon to talk to James about syndication.
First, well-run open source projects never allow “random” people commit access. Commits generally get some level of review from trusted committers. Do you really think that all the people outside Sun who might be interested in contributing are not as smart as the folks at Sun?
Second, your “enterprise” customers want a version of Java backed by Sun. This is perfectly reasonable. I see no reason why the “Sun Java” distribution cannot be built off a common open source base, then tested and certified by Sun. Jonathan has a pretty good article on what he calls “syndication”.
We have a problem. Programming on the non-Microsoft systems needs to get above the C/C++ level. Java would be an excellent candidate, but … it is not happening. Instead we have folks using Mono. If I were Bill Gates (and friends), I would love Mono. Today I get more applications written that could run on .NET (and fewer in Java), and tomorrow I can pull out the rug and forbid running on anything other than Windows. This is a sweet deal - for Microsoft.
The benchmark is to get the full JRE and/or JDK installed on every major Linux distribution. Java should be ubiquitous.