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Posted by editor on January 27, 2009 at 7:03 AM PST

A strong outside review for JavaFX

The Java world could use some good news this week, and just might have gotten some from eWeek's Chief Technology Analyst Jim Rapoza. The abstract for his review, Sun Muscles into RIA Space with JavaFX, begins:

Sun Microsystems rolls out JavaFX to challenge Adobe AIR and Flex, as well as Microsoft Silverlight, in the highly competitive rich Internet application space. Java has always had many of the aspects of RIAs, and JavaFX offers several benefits, including use of the Java run-time and the underlying Java code.

Pretty good for a source that's anything but a Java lackey (indeed, this week they're also wondering aloud whether Java is to blame for Sun's recent layoffs). So what makes for the good review of JavaFX? Actually trying it out, apparently:

To get started developing with JavaFX, I went to and downloaded all of the different free tools for building JavaFX applications. These tools include NetBeans IDE 6.5 for JavaFX 1.0, the JavaFX 1.0 Production Suite and, of course, the JavaFX 1.0 SDK.


In general, I found NetBeans IDE 6.5 for JavaFX 1.0 to be a handy tool for learning how to build and edit JavaFX applications. Working hand in hand with the included sample code and the tutorials available at, I was able to build several simple JavaFX applications.

The JavaFX script code itself is a fairly clean declarative syntax that should be familiar to any developer who has worked in other RIA platforms, who develops AJAX Web code or who works with other advanced Web development systems. The broad set of tools also makes it easier for graphics-oriented developers to work in conjunction with classic Java developers.

It's not all hugs and kisses. He notes the obvious absence of JavaFX Mobile, and dismisses FX's audio and video capabilities as "very basic when compared with the much more robust and flexible media capabilities in the Adobe platforms." Still, in the big picture, eWeek concludes that JavaFX is genuinely competitive: "The JavaFX platform shows promise of being a very important player in the burgeoning RIA category, and it compares very well with the 1.0 releases of Adobe's and Microsoft's RIA platforms."

Also in Java Today,
Kirill Grouchnikov has announced the release candidate of Substance 5.1 and the release candidate of Flamingo 4.0. The new version of the Substance look-and-feel reworks the Office Blue and Office Silver skins, improves support for disabled and themed icons and for very large fonts, extends tracing of EDT violations and more. The new version of the Flamingo Component Suite provides deep improvements to the ribbon, among other improvements. Both projects expect to reach their final release on February 6.

We mentioned it yesterday, but it's important enough for a re-ping: JSR 316, the "container JSR" for Java EE 6, has entered public review, and is available for download. This JSR defines both the full set of JSRs in the EE 6 platform, as well as a "web profile" subset. Roberto Chinnici provides an overview of the proposed spec and the reasoning behind it in his blog. The public review started on January 22 and will continue through February 23.

In today's Weblogs, Sergey Malenkov answers the important question How to format a string? "Sometimes users need to prepare their data for output. Java provides support for layout justification and alignment, common formats for numeric, string, and date/time data, and locale-specific output. However, the JavaFX language reference just briefly mentions this functionality."

Ricardo Liyushiro Chikasawa briefly recaps
Campus Party 2009 in Brazil. "The campus party last year, brought together a large number of Internet users, developers, bloggers, adding more than 4,000 subscribers. This year we more than 6,000 participants in one event."

Finally, Xuan Yun shows how to Integrate Your UI Class into Synth Look And Feel. "Synth look and feel provides the flexibility to customize the component's rendering and behavior. We can implement our own UI class and integrate it into Synth look and feel."

In today's Forums, woel hopes to develop a
EJB application as REST client. "I have developed a small rest client which consumes a rest service and writes to db. Now I would like to move this rest client into a ejb application so it can be triggered by for example a timer event. I could easily take all my code and call from a stateless ejb. What I cannot really figure out is how to best configure the webservice url. I wouldn't want to put it in a constant and even within the ejb.xml it seems a bit static. Should I create some kind of custom jndi resource that hands me the connection to the rest server?"

Jacob Kessler explains when not to worry about GC, in
Re: Garbage Collection in GlassFish. "As long as you aren't having Out of Memory errors, or spending an excessive amount of time collecting garbage (to the point where service quality is degraded), everything is working as intended. The garbage collector will allow the heap to fill up before cleaning out unreachable objects, so reaching the full 1024MB of heap isn't a problem. The point to be worried is if you are either leaking memory (so that eventually the entire heap is filled and you get an OOM error), or if the garbage collector ends up degrading performance. Are either of those happening?"

sdv0967 is looking for information on
WSIT transactions. "Could someone point me to the resource where I can get a full picture about WSAT/WSCOOR services: how they're implemented in GlassFish, when and how they invoked by other GF/WSCOOR instances in distributed WS transactions? If there is no such resource, could someone provide more info on how to use WS transactions?"

Finally, rogerd_dev bemoans the challenges of getting ME apps to users in some parts of the world, in the followup
Re: Do you guys agree that J2ME is dying?. "It troubles me that J2ME in the U.S. depends on the carrier supporting down-loadable apps. My Sprint phone runs (free) Java apps from many different sites, and also apps I can write on my own. I don't give up on Sprint for this reason, although they might go out of service soon! My family runs with Verizon, and none of their phones can take new Java apps. All they can do is purchase apps from the carrier app store, and I do not actually know if they are Java or native code. When I show off Java Google Maps in their store, they admit that their phones do not allow such a downloaded app."

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A strong outside review for JavaFX