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The Winners Are In:’s 2005 Products of the Year
By Rosemarie Graham

February 25, 2005

No red carpet full of beautiful women in stunning gowns. No Chris Rock as Master of Ceremonies. Granted this is not the 77th Annual Academy Awards®, but I bet you are more interested in these winners than the winner of this year’s documentary short subject award.

At the beginning of the contest we asked “What makes a development product worth its weight in gold?” While the characteristics of a superior product still vary from person to person, we now at least have a symbol of what makes that good development product or technology. This year’s contest was an easy one. The numbers were cut and dry and spoke for themselves.

  And the Winners Are…

Technology of the Year
Java 2 Standard EditionTM 5.0 From Sun Microsystems Inc.

Development Tool of the Year
Eclipse From The Eclipse Foundation
Runner Up: Sun JavaTM Studio Creator From Sun Microsystems Inc.

Enterprise Development Tool of the Year
Java J2EETM From Sun Microsystems Inc.
Runner Up: Microsoft® Visual Studio® .Net From Microsoft® Corporation

Development Utility of the Year
Firefox 1.0 From Mozilla
Runner Up: Altova XMLSpy® 2005 From Altova

DBMS or Related Technology of the Year
IBM Cloudscape V10.0 From IBM

Wireless/Mobile Development Product of the Year
J2METM Wireless Toolkit 2.2 From Sun Microsystems Inc.

Web Service or Related Tool of the Year
Java Web Service Developer Pack From Sun Microsystems Inc.

Java Tool of the Year
Sun JavaTM Studio Creator From Sun Microsystems Inc.

.NET Tool/Add-in of the Year
The Mono Project Sponsored by Novell

Open Source Tool of the Year
NetBeans IDE From

“It is obvious that there are two main camps in the development market. These are the Java/Open Source camp and the Microsoft camp. With updated Microsoft development tools being pushed out to 2005, it is no surprise that the Java and Open Source tools dominated the voting for the products of the year awards,” said Bradley Jones, Executive Editor of’s Software Development Channel.

Jones went on to add “This past year was a relatively quiet year from Microsoft as far as new development tools. As a result, open source products dominated the voting. Even in the .NET category, an open source product won. With new releases of Microsoft’s development tools coming in 2005, next year’s voting is sure to be heated!”

Congratulations to all the people who produced the winning products. Thank you to all the readers who participated in the Product of the Year 2005 contest from the nominations through the voting.

Sun’s Moment in the Spotlight

I think the results of this contest show that Sun has been rewarded by developers for the effort they have put into their products over the past year. Why did they win? A few years back, Sun set out a product roadmap for developers that called for a range of products and technologies to match the diverse needs of different developer constituencies.

Over the past year, Sun has delivered on this vision. By expanding its product line with brand new offerings like Java Studio Creator and stepping up its commitment to the NetBeans open source project, the creator of Java has brought to market a broad and innovative line of products.

In addition, as the steward of Java, Sun deserves credit for bringing two blockbuster releases of the Java platform to fruition: J2SE 5.0 and J2EE 1.4.

Sun is also pioneering a new development model, moving to subscription-based pricing for tools, reasoning that developers need more than just good tools to work with — they also need support, tutorials, examples, etc.

Details on the Category Winners

For more insight into the finalists including the qualities we believe helped to be recognized by the readers of, you can check out the following articles. Each of these focuses on a different award and includes insight on the winning product and information on the trends in the market that can be derived based on the voting.

Technology of the Year by Jason Gilmore

Development Tool of the Year by Paul Kimmel

Enterprise Development Tool of the Year by Vlad Kofman

Development Utility of the Year by Mike Gunderloy

DBMS or Related Technology of the Year by Mike Klaene

Wireless/Mobile Development Product of the Year by Alex Gusev

Web Service or Related Tool of the Year by Sujata De

Java Tool of the Year by Mike Klaene

.NET Tool/Add-in of the Year by Mike Gunderloy

Open Source Tool of the Year by Jason Gilmore

Article adapted from

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