Chapter 5: Technology and Overview

The World Wide Web makes it possible to transmit multimedia-enhanced documents interactively in a platform-independent fashion using Hypertext Markup Language, html. These documents are prepared and transmitted as text documents and can, therefore, be prepared with any text editor. Yet, the html browser displays full multimedia information including animated text, graphics, video and sound. The recent introduction of the Java programming language by Sun Microsystems makes it possible to add platform-independent programs to this multimedia stew. Java accomplishes this trick by specifying a relatively simple Virtual Machine, VM, which can be implemented on any computer architecture, i.e., UNIX, Macintosh, or Windows.