Sun Microsystems has announced a program that will help individual companies deploy Jini, its new, Java-based technology designed to let different electronic products communicate across networks.
At last week's JavaOne Developer Conference, Sun also announced its Java programming language educa-tional courses will now be sold on the World Wide Web.
The consulting service will offer assistance to designers to learn about Jini, to evaluate its architecture and to set up Jini prototypes. The price of the consulting service will be set by Sun on a company-by-company basis, Sun officials said.
Jini products are set for release by the end of next year, although prototypes are being used now, said Mark Bauhaus, director of Sun's worldwide Internet and Java practice.
Much is expected from Jini, as companies seek to use it to link electronic devices such as handheld computers, car computers and household appliances, regardless of their operating system or hardware, Bauhaus said.
"People will wake up to the killer applications of Jini and have a head start on everyone else," he said.
However, Sun is facing competition from other companies offering similar products, including Microsoft's Universal Plug and Play, said Rob Enderle, an industry analyst with the US Giga Information Group.
The consulting services are being introduced to drum up interest and "to help create a market for Jini", Enderle said.
Educational programs for Sun's Java programming language will begin on August 1 with prices ranging from $US50 to $90. The courses range from introductory programs to networking with Java programming.
They can be accessed on the Web at