Skimmers Guide for Week 8 of The Well Grounded Java Developer

24 Mar

“As you can imagine, people are somewhat passionate about their favorite web framework!”

What did we read about?

This week we finish our first book.

  • Chapter 13. Rapid web development

  • Chapter 14. Staying well-grounded

The chapter on rapid development begins by looking at the why Java is less than ideal for rapid web development.  It explains why static typing and the need to build and deploy slow down web development.  Matt Raible’s rating scheme was used to assess the available web frameworks and Grails came out on top. An extended practical introduction to Grails, a Groovy based framework, followed.  The chapter concluded with a brief look at Clojure’s Complojure framework.

The final chapter looked to the future and the new features promised for Java 8.  The introduction of Lambdas will allow for a more functional style of programming using plain old Java.  We also read about the modularity of Project Jigsaw, but the text is a little out of date.  Jigsaw has been postponed to Java 9.  The book concludes by looking further into the future and the promises of Meta Object Protocols, Coroutines and Tuples.

What stood out?

  • The Grails walkthrough covers a LOT of ground.  If you can spare the time to work through it you won’t be disappointed.

  • For those who are not yet ready to abandon Java there are plenty of useful tips showing how to make Java web development less painful.  They point to tools like Spring Roo and JRebel.

  • The comprehensive tooling of Grails and the design simplicity of Compojure make for an interesting contrast.

If you read nothing else this week…

  • “Criteria in selecting a web framework” uses Matt Railbles rating scheme to take an objective view of the frameworks available.  It uses a weighted rating scheme based on 20 criteria to rank the frameworks.  It’s good to see rational reasoning in a field dominated by tool evangelism.  Remember to change the weightings to reflect your needs.  How does your favourite framework score?

  • If you haven’t got time to work through the Grails example then please spend a couple of hours on Compojure.  It shows how good design can makes things easy through simplicity.
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