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JavaOne Monday: JSF, 3D, and Tools

Posted by wiverson on June 28, 2004 at 8:09 PM PDT

JavaOne this year is proving to be an exciting and interesting event. Between Hibernate and EJB 3.0, there is a sense that the persistence world is moving toward a more rational, coherent model. Initial skepticism over JavaServer Faces (JSF) is waning in the face of the broad tool and component vendor support. Many developers are warming up to the new features (and understanding the implications) of Tiger. All this interesting technology combined with a noticeably better economic outlook make for a pleasantly positive show.

In no particular order, here are some of the interesting personal highlights as of Monday:

- JSF is looking like a compelling component model for building web applications by assembly. In particular, there is a good chance we'll see a rich third party market for JSF components - one session I attended today showed sophisticated JSF components for charting and GIS. JSF components (and implicitly Creator) are going to have a huge impact on how we build Java web applications. There is some grousing about favorite pet features from other frameworks not appearing in JSF, but the writing seems to be on the wall.

- Sun appears to be reinvesting in 3D and entertainment technologies. This includes reinvesting in Java 3D, building game-centric OpenGL Java bindings, and the development of a server for massively multiplayer games. 3D technology plays a significant role in Project Looking Glass. It'll be interesting to see how this strategy unfolds over the course of the next few years.

- Tools, tools, tools. There are a huge variety of tools at the show, in addition to the JSF web/presentation tier Creator. Many vendors are demonstrating development tools integrated with Eclipse. Oracle's JDeveloper, available for a free trial (no timebomb, no restrictions) includes an astonishing array of functionality including Java/UML synchronized modeling and visual JSP design. NetBeans continues to advance, with a number of events planned for later in the week. Perhaps the most brutal thing for the various tool vendors is the sheer variety of frameworks in use. If you are attending the show, be sure to let the vendors know what frameworks you use now, and what you expect to be using over the course of the next year.

A good vibe, fun technology, new and interesting tools - a great start to the show.

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