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Microsoft to buy Dimension X

Microsoft will acquire Java multimedia software developer Dimension X.

Microsoft (MSFT) said today that it will acquire Java software developer Dimension X and incorporate the company's technology into its Direct X multimedia development interface.

Microsoft plans to combine Dimension X's Java-based multimedia authoring tool, Liquid Motion, and Java-based VRML browser, Liquid Reality, with its Direct X multimedia application programming interface. The addition of the Java technology will allow developers to build Windows applications with video, audio, 3D, and animation.

Microsoft said the incorporation of the multimedia technologies into Direct X will result in the delivery of more compelling applications through its Internet Explorer browser.

No terms of the acquisition were disclosed. Microsoft said San Francisco-based Dimension X's 40 employees will relocate to Microsoft's campus in Redmond, Washington.

Dimension X, founded in March of 1995, claims to be among the first Java development companies. It was an alpha site in 1994 for the initial release of Java, previously known as LiveOak, according to the company. After Netscape Communications, it was the first start-up company to license Java.