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Phoenix From The Flames

Posted by editor on January 26, 2009 at 8:19 AM PST

Glazed Lists are back, but did they ever leave?

Got a great e-mail over the weekend from the Glazed Lists guys, Jesse Wilson and James Lemieux. They alerted me to a new release of Glazed Lists, the Swing lists and tables library that a lot of Java Desktop developers absolutely swear by, and here's the front page blurb I adapted from their release announcement:

The Glazed Lists project has released version 1.8.0 of the popular library for list sorting and filtering. "The release has better integration with Swing, SWT, Hibernate, OSGi, Maven and SwingX. Filtering has been refined, with improved support for international languages and matching support for regex and search-engine style qualifiers. Some EventLists have new features, including runtime manipulation of the FunctionList function and GroupingList comparator. There are new classes for working with user input, including TransactionList and undo/redo support. The release fixes several bugs."

Now here's the discussion point. 1.8.0 is the first release of GL since 1.7 way back in August 2006. Jesse writes:

James and I just released v1.8 of Glazed Lists. This was the first release since 2006. A lot has happened in that time: SwingX got really big, then got quiet, JavaFX was announced and released, the beans bindings JSR came to life and subsequently died.

So there's all this buzz for all of these new projects, and we're still sort of chugging along, quietly kicking ass. What do we do to generate buzz when our project is stable, and the number of new features we add is diminishing from release to release?

When a project hasn't released for two years, does that mean that it's abandoned? How do developers deal with projects that are stable?

They make a really good point. GL has a lot of fans, and has been a stable technology for a long time now. The guys aren't going to throw in a bunch of ancillary "features" if they've largely completed what they set out to accomplish. In other words, they haven't had a release since 2006 because they didn't need a release in that time, and neither apparently did their users.

But given that, how do you tell a successful, stable project from one that's been abandoned? A few months back, when Sun's Sonya Barry was looking for abandoned projects to archive and get out of the way of more active projects, she found that it took a combination of metrics -- last checkin date, activity on lists or forums, number of downloads, history of previous releases -- to be able to make a good call on whether a given project was mature or abandoned. And obviously, that's not something you want to get wrong!

Do we reward projects that do lots of little releases, and neglect those that don't need to? What other projects, mature and not needing a lot of new work, are out there and deserving of some attention?

Also in Java Today,
the latest edition, issue 189 of the JavaTools Community Newsletter is out, with tool-related news from around the web, a new community project (Hex-Editor), a graduation ( FindBugs-IDEA), and a Tool Tip about creating project dashboard with Sonar.

The Aquarium passes along the announcement that WebBeans is Dead. Long Live Java Contexts and Dependency Injection! "WebBeans is no more; the specification created by the JSR 299 Expert Group (under Gavin King) has been revised substantially and has been renamed to Java Context and Dependenty Injection. Perhaps a less catchy name but, as Gavin indicates, this has been done... better reflect the fact that the focus of 299 is the definition of services that apply to all EE component types, rather than the creation of a new component model. Check out Gavin's announcement for an overview and download the draft from the PRD page."

The big changes in JSR-299 are just part of the status updates summarized in Roberto Chinnici's Java EE 6 Platform Public Review, topping today's Weblogs. "The public review for JSR-316, the Java EE 6 Platform JSR, started yesterday. The review will last 30 days, ending on February 23. The email address for feedback hasn't changed: it's"

Masood Mortazavi uses his blog to take a look at The Apache OFBiz Book
"Every once in a while I get asked to review a book. This time it's Apache OFBiz Development: The Beginner's Tutorial by Jonathan Wong and Rupert Howell."

Finally, Raghavan "Rags" Srinivas considers Cloud Computing and Java, saying, "I am a beneficiary (or victim?) of the cloud computing hype (or reality?)."

This week's Spotlight is on
Zero, a port of OpenJDK that uses no assembler and therefore can trivially be built on any system. The goal of this project is be to be able to build a TCK-compliant OpenJDK of reasonable performance on any platform with no additional porting work. The interpreter part of Zero is known to work on PowerPC (32- and 64-bit), x86-64, IA-64, ARM and zSeries. Zero is currently Linux- and GCC-specific, but supporting other operating systems and compilers is one area in which contributions are particularly welcome. Work is currently under way on an LLVM-based JIT known as Shark.

In today's Forums, Ryan de Laplante wonders when he'll see a GlassFish v3 embedded in Maven? "Will I be able to add a dependency line in a maven web project for GlassFish v3, and configure a plugin that enables people to start glassfish and run my application like they can do with Jetty today? I want someone to be able to check out my project from subversion and run a single command to download dependencies, compile, package, and deploy into an embedded GlassFish v3, and open a web browser pointed to my app."

shagus complains of some
JavaFX missing components. "Hi. I heard that JavaFX 1.1 will be released in February. I was wondering whether or not the following components would be included: TextArea, Table, PanelGid, BookPanel. The current version is useless for any kind of development, except for toy apps."

Finally stottle figures out some BD-J drawing concepts in
Re: Question on how Paint() and layers work in BD-J. "I think I answered my own question. The requirements/documentation for BD-J state that there are multiple planes for content. The background plane, for a background image or animation, a video plane, which holds both video and presentation graphics, and a graphics plane for menus and stuff. So the api's, which I still don't have a good handle on, will be specific to one or another plane. The text/button/UI stuff created by java ME will be painted on the graphics plane. The player (or player software, in the case of TMT) will control the creation of the single buffer displayed, but in order to follow the BD-J requirements, will combine the information on the three buffers to generate the display buffer."

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Glazed Lists are back, but did they ever leave?