We emphasize throughout this book that Java is much more than simply a programming language. This chapter takes that lesson to heart and discusses Java's role in a technology destined to become part of all our lives in the near future-smart cards. In light of its history as a platform for embedded devices, it's a bit ironic, but not surprising, that in one of its many forms, Java is coming full circle back to its embedded roots. Smart cards provide an important enabling technology for e-commerce. They are integral building blocks in many systems currently on the drawing board and a few systems already in service. Java can help make smart cards more accessible to developers and business people by providing a well-understood, familiar environment.
One of the barriers blocking the adoption of smart cards throughout the world has been the lack of a common platform on which to develop applications. Java can help dismantle that barrier, opening a world of potential development opportunities to Java developers and cutting-edge organizations.
This chapter answers a number of questions about Java-based smart cards, including:
Copyright ©1999 Gary McGraw and Edward Felten.