So get the tarball!
It is sure a pain to install it seems. Linking here, adding to the PATH there, testing, it's all alot of work for something like Java, I definitely agree.
I don't remember, it's been too long, but I am pretty sure I did get a tarball. You might need to hunt around a bit, but I do think there is one. Once I extracted it, I was basically done. The extracted tarball was precompiled everything. It was the directory, and I just had to move it to my desired location. Which btw is up to you. You are gonna add java to your PATH so wherever you want is fine. I have mine in /usr/local/bin/java but that's just me. Anyway, let's use that for the example. So that's where you are going to have it stored, then add this to your PATH:
And for the browser java plugin:
ln -s /usr/local/bin/java/jre/i386/ns4/javaplugin.so /usr/lib/mozilla<version>/plugins/javaplugin.so
ln -s /usr/local/bin/java/jre/i386/ns610/java(it's the only entry and I can't remember the name right now so just use it, don't forget to use TAB autocompletion when possible
) /usr/lib/mozilla<version>/plugins/(whatever the name was)
That's the quick and dirty version, if you need a bit more in depth help, I'll be glad to give it