One of the best sources of information about the demographics of Web users are the surveys conducted by the Graphics, Visualisation and Usability Centre at Georgia Technology University in the United States. Their latest poll has returned results about everything from Web users' political leanings to their income to their awareness of Web-related security issues. Most poignant, though, is a new section that looks at the attitudes of Web developers and authors towards Java. This is a timely subject to be added to the survey because we are in the midst of a high level of Java hype these days, with much talk of how it will revolutionise the Web and Java-enabled network computers costing less than US$500. One would expect, then, that most Web authors have experimented with Java or are actively using it and that the Web development community would see Java as a useful tool. The survey, however, paints a different picture - one where most Web authors have not tried Java yet and where many are sceptical of the media hype, choosing to see Java more as an aesthetic addition to the Web rather than a functional one. The survey found that: Only 17 per cent of Web authors responding to the survey have programmed in Java. While almost 60 per cent indicated they intended to move into Java programming within the next year, this figure may be more optimistic than realistic. Only 15 per cent of respondents felt that Java would revolutionise the Web. Almost 30 per cent only saw the value of Java as aesthetic or as having no value at all. These results run counter to the image of Java that Sun has been trying so hard to create - that of the ultimate tool for developing platform-independent, interactive, secure content on the World-Wide Web and beyond. One would think that with all the effort Sun has poured into Java - not to mention the resources committed by the likes of Netscape, Microsoft and Oracle - that most Web authors would be at least experimenting with Java if not using it outright as a major component of their work. It is hard to draw any solid conclusions from a survey like this, but the fact that only 15 per cent of the web authors saw Java as revolutionary does not actually mean that it is not so. Often it is the technical users and developers who fail to see what amounts to something revolutionary in the market place. Take the tremendous success of Windows and its successors. While there is truth to the argument that Windows is not as advanced as many other operating systems, it is still revolutionary in that it has brought computing within reach of millions of people who otherwise may never have joined the computing community. Even after the huge success of the product, many technically minded people cling to the belief that Windows has not been as important in the development of personal computing as it has been. Java may be revolutionary but the die-hard Web tech-heads may not be willing to acknowledge it because it comes from corporate America. While Java may reach the level of acceptance expected by the likes of Sun and Netscape, it could take longer than originally expected.