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Have you seen JSF lately? (Part 1)

Posted by driscoll on May 27, 2009 at 6:40 PM PDT

One of the most persistent annoyances in working on JSF is the pervasiveness of old information, usually from years ago, and often now inaccurate. Google ranks the JSF 1.1 tutorial over the JSF 1.2 tutorial... One Tweet I recently read referred to a Joe Ottinger blog from 2007 - over 2 years ago. Yet it was referenced as new information. Still another blog I recently read contained information and quotes from 2004. John Kerry was still a candidate for President (Heck, Howard Dean was still a candidate for President), folks still thought housing was a great investment, and Brittany was ripping up the charts with her new hit "Toxic". Ronald Reagan and Yasser Arafat were both still alive. That's a pretty long time ago.

So, to those people (and to the rest of you, as well), I'd simply like to ask: have you seen JSF lately?

The JSF 2.0 spec is going to final ballot as I write this, and we've been working on the implementation of that spec for over a year now. That implementation is now beta, and will be out as FCS before the end of the year. It's time to take a new look. If you don't, you're cheating yourself.

So, if you haven't looked at JSF lately, I'd like to use this series of blogs (three, I think) to look at things that folks used to complain about WRT JSF, and what the new JSF 2 standard does that addresses those complaints.

Here's the first one:

Configuration files.

I admit it, I never liked the idea of separating out configuration from implementation - either in the main line of J2EE, or in JSF. Sure, it's useful in some cases, but certainly not the common case. With the new Annotation support, the need for configuration files (mostly) disappears.

The new JSF specification practices the "DRY" principle (Don't Repeat Yourself). One application of this is for Managed Beans. If you have to take the time to write a Managed Bean java class, why should you have to take any additional action to tell the system,

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