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Java EE 6 Gets it Right

The Java EE 6 proposal (JSR 316) was published today. I believe that this will be the most important revision of the platform since it was released nearly 10 years ago, and that it should be welcomed by users of the technology. Interface21 is happy to be a supporter of this JSR, and I am looking forward to contributing to it.

Java EE (known as J2EE for most of its history) has played a valuable role in creating a market for Java middleware. However, over those 10 years, important issues have emerged with the platform, such as:

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Is Open Source Dying? Case Not Proven

Michael Hickins recently published a piece on eWeek entitled Is Open Source Dying? The title drew me in, and no doubt plenty of other folk too. But the article doesn’t prove the case, although it contains some interesting points that merit discussion.

Most of the article concerns speculation about the experience of government with open source, and the motives of vendors such as IBM. I prefer to judge companies and individuals by their actions, rather than speculation about their motives, and there is plenty of evidence that IBM, for example, takes open source very seriously. There’s plenty of open source in WebSphere, for example.

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So should you still use Spring's HibernateTemplate and/or JpaTemplate??

I was reading an article by Vigil Bose on TSS the other day and saw the usage of the HibernateDaoSupport class. Since this is no longer a recommended way of using Hibernate from Spring, I thought I might as well just blog about it another time.

With the advent of Spring 2.0, it has become possible to start using the Hibernate Session API directly again. The question is whether or not it is wise to abandon the use of the HibernateTemplate when working with Hibernate, or any other template-based approaches Spring features.

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Code samples from SpringOne 'Beyond the obvious' talk

Last week at SpringOne, Alef and I gave a talk on dealing with complex applications using Spring. Complexity in this case was considered both at the structural and dynamic level. As for the structural part of the talk, I covered that one in my previous blog posting. The dynamic part explained some possible solutions to deal with differences between your deployment environments. (testing, acceptance, production, etc.)
A lot of people asked me if I could provide them with the source of the demonstrations I gave during the talk. I’ve attached the sources to this blog entry and will explain briefly how this all works. Hopefully the talk itself will eventually become available on parleys.com later this year, so you can get some more background information on the topic.

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The Power of Batch

In the last session of SpringOne yesterday, Dave Syer, Scott Wintermute, Lucas Ward and Wayne Lund all presented on Spring Batch. I didn’t actually attend (since I had an early cab ride), but I stuck my head in and was yet again astounded by the amount of interest.

Back at JavaOne we had an immense amount of interest in this solution as well, with plenty of visitors calling by the booth to quiz us about batch.

It’s all too easy in this world of Ajax and Rich Internet Applications to forget that a large number (a majority maybe?) of large scale enterprise applications are batch-oriented. Batch is like the dirty little secret that Java tries to hide from the world - but no more!

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Putting Spring Web Flow to a Load Test

Load testing a Web Flow application is similar to load testing any other web application – we’ll use a load testing tool to simulate increasing levels of concurrent client access in order to capture essential performance statistics.

With Web Flow there will be a couple of important considerations for the load test:

  1. The load test must maintain independent “cookie storage area” so each client request can carry an independent HTTP session.
  2. We need a mechanism for extracting the unique flow execution key from the initial response and use it to customize subsequent requests in the same flow session.
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Spring Framework Certified on WebSphere

SpringOne is humming along nicely. This year it’s a 3 day show, up from 2 days last year, and once again it’s great to see hundreds of attendees at a Spring conference. For once I’m quite relaxed at a show, as after the opening keynote I have no further sessions, and don’t need to work on slides.

Right now, Adrian is preparing to make a major announcement about Spring tooling. Well actually he’s giving a uniquely personal take on duck typing, as I’m sure you’ll hear…

More about that later, but first I need to share some news from yesterday. I was happy to be able to announce that we have worked with IBM to certify Spring on IBM’s flagship WebSphere Application Server. As much of Interface21’s customer base is in large enterprises, we see a lot of WebSphere and have wanted to ensure the ideal integration for years. It’s good to see that IBM share this goal. Their commitment to the integration was also largely driven by customers, many of whom have adopted Spring and experienced great results with it. As Spring adoption has moved from project-by-project to strategic, such customers want to know that this combination is supportable and that both vendors are behind it.

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Source for demos shown at NL-JUG session June 13th 2007

Yesterday, Joris and I gave a session at the Dutch Java Users Group. We did the session twice and had about 250 people in total attending the sessions. A lot of people asked for the code for the demos we did during the sessions. Attached you’ll find the code for the AOP and Dependency Injection demos. It shows a simple aspect flushing the Hibernate session before every JDBC operation (not as robust as you’d want it in production code, but it’s a start) and it also shows the CarPlant system (demo’d before in other sessions and previously attached to another blog entry) configured using the various to do Dependency Injection in Spring 2.1 (i.e. using <bean>, @Bean and @Autowired).

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Spring: the de-facto standard in Enterprise Java Programming

Yesterday GigaSpaces announced the latest release of their Space-Based Architecture, and it’s got a new name to go with it too: the GigaSpaces eXtreme Application Platform (XAP). To quote from their press release:

The new release provides a complete middleware platform for managing data, messaging and business logic for applications that require high performance and the ability to scale horizontally across hundreds of machines.


As part of the new product release, GigaSpaces has embraced a much simpler, non-intrusive programming model that allows developers to write their applications in Plain Old Java Objects (POJOs), plain .Net and plain C++ objects. For Java, GigaSpaces is achieving this by supporting the Spring Framework, which is rapidly becoming the de-facto standard in Enterprise Java programming.
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