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Spring 2.5's Comprehensive Annotation Support

One of the central themes behind Spring 2.5 is comprehensive annotation-based configuration. We’ve been talking and blogging a lot about @Autowired, about Spring MVC’s @RequestMapping and also about the new support for annotated tests written with JUnit4 or TestNG. @Autowired is certainly the central one of Spring 2.5’s annotations, being available for use in service components, web components, unit tests - even domain objects when using Spring’s @Configurable with AspectJ weaving. Spring MVC’s @RequestMapping is equally flexible, supporting many variants of handler method signatures.

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Spring Dynamic Modules 1.0 is here

I am glad to report (along side Adrian) that after 3 milestones and 2 release candidates, Spring Dynamic Modules (formerly known as Spring OSGi) 1.0 has been released.

A lot of features have been improved or added since my previous post (about 1.0 M1); I’ll talk more about them in future entries (there is also the reference documentation that explains the library at length) so I’ll just name a few:

- consistency

We want to provide a powerful, simple and consistent programming model. That’s why Spring Dynamic Modules builds on top of Spring and uses its proven concepts, reliability and ubiquity.

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Spring Dynamic Modules reaches 1.0!

Well, it took a lot longer than we initially anticipated, but I’m really pleased to say that the Spring Dynamic Modules project reached its 1.0 milestone today. When I first posted on this topic back in September of 2006 (“Spring OSGi support gaining momentum”) the initial specification was just an attachment to an issue against the Spring Framework, and connections to the wider OSGi community were only just beginning to be formed.

Fast forward eighteen months, and Spring Dynamic Modules has become a full-fledged project in the Spring portfolio with committers from SpringSource, BEA, and Oracle. Both BEA and Oracle are using Spring Dynamic Modules to build their own OSGi-based products (see for example “WebLogic Event Server - why we used Spring”), and the Spring Dynamic Modules discussion group has almost 1000 members. The OSGi Alliance itself has formed an Enterprise Expert Group, and SpringSource is an active member.

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Spring Overtakes EJB as a Skills Requirement

Job listings are a good indicator of the true adoption of technologies. They indicate whether or not companies are spending money, making it possible to distinguish substance from hype; they indicate the importance for developers of gaining and growing the relevant skills (an important element of technology perpetuation); and they provide a good guide to the safety for companies in adopting a particular technology.

Thus the jobtrends site of Indeed.com, a job listing aggregation site, is an important resource. It allows trends in the number of job requirements to be tracked over time, and makes it convenient to compare technologies.

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New Improvements in Domain Object Dependency Injection Feature

Spring’s dependency injection (DI) mechanism allows configuring beans defined in application context. What if you want to extend the same idea to non-beans? Spring’s support for domain object DI utilizes AspectJ weaving to extend DI to any object, even if it is created by, say, a web or an ORM framework. This enables creating domain behavior rich objects, since domain objects can now collaborate with the injected objects. In this blog, I discuss the latest improvements in the Spring framework in this area.

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The SpringSource Certification Program

Note: This post has been edited to reflect Spring’s move to Pivotal. A more recent blog on Spring Training and Certification is here.

Since I joined SpringSource six months ago as the Director of Training, I have been hearing one consistent request. Based on the growing demand for Spring skills, developers and consultants worldwide are seeking quantifiable ways to demonstrate their Spring expertise. Likewise, the hiring managers behind that demand are asking for a certification program to help identify and hire technologists who have an immediately useful, baseline knowledge of Spring.

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The Power of Adoption: Why no Company is Big Enough to Deny Developers What They Want

Quite a day for news as we complete our first annual Spring eXchange in London. First, the news that Sun Microsystems acquired MySQL, and then the long anticipated acquisition of BEA Systems by Oracle. Before commenting any further, I want to congratulate all of our friends at MySQL, especially Mårten Mickos, and all of our friends at BEA. The trend of consolidation in this industry is increasing.

As an open source company, we are thrilled to see MySQL rewarded for their effort. We have seen how hard Mårten and his colleagues have worked to build their software, community and a strong business, benefiting countless developers in the process. They have been among the pioneers of open source. More importantly, we have appreciated the counsel and advice the MySQL folks have given us as we build our business in northern California and around the world. Their success is well earned and we wish them all the success in the world in their new endeavors.

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Happy Birthday Tony Hoare

Last Friday was Tony (C.A.R.) Hoare’s birthday. Who is C. A. R. Hoare? If you’re a programmer, you’re probably familiar with Quicksort–an elegant and surprisingly simple sorting algorithm that is blazingly fast in most cases. If you studied computer science, you’ve almost certainly implemented Quicksort in numerous languages, and will recognize the animation on this page. Hoare invented Quicksort in 1960, and it’s now the most widely used sorting algorithm.
Quicksort in Action

Among other contributions, Hoare also invented the Communicating Sequential Processes (CSP) language used to specify the interactions of concurrent processes. A smart guy, who has made a notable contribution to the evolution of computer science.

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Capturing failures and system state (part I)

At The Spring Experience, I hosted a session various aspects. One of them was the Hibernate synchronization aspect that I described last week. Another was an aspect capable of capturing first failures and system state, sometimes called First-Failure Data Capture (FFDC). I hosted this session to show off some aspects that are very useful, but that people might not have come across in practice yet. I often hear people asking about aspects other than logging, tracing, transaction management and security. The Hibernate synchronization aspect and the FFDC aspect are nice examples I think.

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Spring .NET 1.1 and container configuration

It has been quite a year for Spring.NET. We have gone through two milestone and two release candidates before the GA release in December. The first chunks of code for the 1.1 release were made way back in late 2004 by Aleks Seovic who started work on the ASP.NET framework. In short, it has been a long time in the making. Being the end of year, a natural time for reflection both past and present, I’d like to say thanks to the other members of the project and the Spring.NET community for all their contributions and support. I’m looking forward to a great 2008!

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