|Feature||Java||Visual Basic||C++||Smalltalk||Script(VB, Java)|
|Platform independent||Yes||No||No||No||Dependent on the browser|
|Object oriented||Yes||No||Yes||Yes||Pseudo at best|
|Automatic garbage collection||Yes||No||No||Yes||No|
The ideal web language should be one that was made for the Internet. It should be portable across the many platforms that support web browsers. In fact, it should be browser independent. Furthermore, it must be secure, especially for applications that run over the Internet. It must be an object-oriented programming language, so that developers can re-use existing code. It must also be web-centric.
Java has emerged as the likely winner in the succession of languages on the web. It builds upon the benefits of existing OOP languages like C++, removes unnecessary complexity like pointers and memory allocation, and introduces security and portability features that are important for the web. Unfortunately, many of the underlying class libraries and enterprise frameworks for enabling distributed objects are not yet defined or built for Java. In the meantime, many Fortune 1000 firms are implementing distributed object frameworks using VisualAge Smalltalk from IBM and Distributed Smalltalk 5.6 from Parcplace systems.