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InfoQ Homepage News Oracle JDeveloper 11g Preview and over 80 AJAX-enabled Open Source JSF Components Released

Oracle JDeveloper 11g Preview and over 80 AJAX-enabled Open Source JSF Components Released

Oracle has released a technology preview version of its JDeveloper 11g IDE along with over 80 freely-available AJAX-enabled JSF components, bolstering its visual development capabilities with improved support for rich-client interfaces, live database connectivity, data binding, and more. The JDeveloper 11g preview is available for free download and the JSF components are open source, released through the Apache MyFaces Project.

Duncan Mills, Director of Product Management for Fusion, gave InfoQ a live demonstration and described some of the goals Oracle had for this release. In the same example that was shown at JavaOne, Duncan demonstrated a completely visual mechanism for adding AJAX drag-and-drop interactivity to an existing application, including some very interesting data typing functionality (called data flavors in JDeveloper) that allows interactions of drag components and drop targets to be validated and handled both declaratively and automatically. The key point of the new UI-oriented features is to enable "AJAX without AJAX" and let developers create modern web interactivity while staying within Java and JSF. While JDeveloper 11g adds a JavaScript editor and debugger, the tool has been designed to encapsulate inside of supplied components, 90% of the JavaScript and HTML that conventionally would be written by an AJAX developer.

JDeveloper 11g also adds a variety of new features to its data visualization components including graph interactivity (e.g. zooming) and Flash rendering. However, Duncan noted that the Flash rendering present was limited to data visualization and was not an attempt to be an alternate display technology like Flex or JavaFX. Rather, the intent is to use Flash where Flash is appropriate in an HTML, JavaScript, and JSF context.

While the JDeveloper tooling is designed to simplify the development process with graphical interactivity, the underlying JSF components are available on a standalone open-source basis from a sub-project of Apache MyFaces called the Rich Client Framework that was founded on the basis of these donated components.

Oracle has also released its Oracle Development Kit for Spring, an add-on to JDeveloper that provides a series of wizards to assist in the development of Spring applications. There is also editor support for Spring 1.x and 2.x definitions with code insight, completion, and validation, and a transaction manager to tie the lightweight model within Spring to the transactional capabilities of Oracle's application server.

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