Over the past decade, the emergence of the Internet has given computer networks a place in everyday life. Already, life without email or the Web is beginning to seem distant and impossible. The Net already functions like an immense repository of information, organized in a complex fabric of interconnected servers. It is characterized by the complexity of the network, which provides richness of content, yet makes navigation difficult. Existing Internet technologies - TCP/IP, email, the browser - are ingenious, but not perfect. There is plenty of room for improvement.

The Internet of today is an early version of what has long been many thinkers' irrsistible dream, "to build the network that makes all networks one, a global nervous system." ("One Huge Computer") Such a network would have many advantages: versatility, decentralization, range, and computational power. The allure is great indeed; this fantastic resource could indeed be all things to all people. The potential for commercialization is obvious, so the technology industry is working hard to realize this dream. Technologies such as Sun's Jini are meant to make existing networks more accessible, more universal.

By creating a distributed system where every hardware component is “Plug-and-Work” in compliance with an established industry standard, the very meaning of the word computer is called into question. Joy’s ultimate goal is to see an age where the individual is not limited by the platform/operating system one is running on a personal machine. Much like what he and Sun did in introducing the platform-friendly Java programming language, Joy seeks to generalize computing access further with the next revolutionary product, Jini. This distributed system would allow computing access simply by plugging one’s monitor into the network and using the shared resources of the internet.

Sun’s motto is “The Network is the Computer” and soon via Jini and language Java, it hopes to make this a reality by universalizing access to everyone on the planet.