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InfoQ Homepage News Web Beans JSR 299 approved by JCP for further development

Web Beans JSR 299 approved by JCP for further development

The new Web Beans JSR 299 has been approved by the JCP executive committee for further development.  Web Beans aims to enable EJB 3 session and entity beans to be used as JSF managed beans (known as actions in other frameworks) eliminating the dual layers of web actions and EJB's common in web apps. Instead, EJB's will BE the actions. Web Beans was first submitted to the JCP this past May by JBoss,  with support from Oracle, Sun, Borland, and Google. 

A number of people are calling Web Beans as a standardization of JBoss SEAM. Spec lead Gavin King insists that Seam standardizes some of the best features from a nubmer of frameworks, such as some of the first class constructs for modelling user interactions in use within frameworks like JBoss SEAM, Struts Shale, and Oracle ADF.

Some specifics from the proposal include:
  • Changes to EJB 3 that will be needed for EJB's to act as JSF managed beans.
  • Annotations for manipulating contextual variables in a stateful, contextual, component-based architecture.
  • An enhanced context model including conversational and business process contexts.
  • Extension points to allow the integration of business process management engines.
  • Integration of Java Persistence API extended persistence contexts.
EJB, which began as a framework for distributed transactional components. has typically been used by developers as a transactional services layer, completely divorsed from the web tier.  This JSR recognizes that the majority of developers using EJB are using it to build web applications and will attempt to standardize the binding between web and EJB's, which (among other things) will eliminate the 'glue' presentation logic typical in the presentation tier before calling the services layer. Oracle has been doing this for some time with ADF + JDeveloper, and as does the more recent JBoss SEAM.  

Support for this standard among the executive committee was strong and unanimous.  BEA commented that Web Beans "appears to be a sufficient challenge to achieve, but, in light of the overwhelming support at this stage of the process, we are prepared to see it go ahead."

JSR 299 will be the first JSR ever led by JBoss. The expert group for the JSR will be formed over the next few weeks.

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