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Oracle at JavaOne: Ajax Widgets and Enterprise Middleware

The Ajax widgets that Oracle has donated to Apache will be useful to open-source developers, helping them develop rich user interfaces without JavaScript programming. They will be even more helpful to Oracle and its customers, as they're designed to work with Oracle's JDeveloper environment.
However, Oracle isn't the first development tools vendor to give away its Ajax stuff: Tibco did the same thing last month, and developers also have other free alternatives, notably RubyOnRails. All of these will make Sun's attempt to introduce a new scripting language with JavaFX even harder.

Meanwhile, Oracle's new middleware architecture follows the recent trend of SOA convergence to its logical conclusion: In addition to integrating all the different OA components together, Oracle also plans to include grid computing and complex event processing. Both technologies can usefully be integrated with SOA, and other vendors are also talking about something similar: BEA and IBM with grid computing, Tibco with CEP. Users will be understandably concerned about interoperability between these giant middleware platforms, though Oracle's plans to adopt service component architecture (SCA) should reduce some of these fears.
Andy Dornan
senior technology editor

Major Java backer Oracle checked in at this week's JavaOne show with several notable bits of news, including new widgets to add rich application development and an upgrade to its middleware architecture to tying together disparate SOA elements.

Oracle previewed new releases of Oracle JDeveloper, Oracle Application Development Framework and Oracle Application Server at the show, with a focus on easing both back-end Java enterprise development and front-end Ajax-style interfaces.

New capabilities include new visual development support for all Java EE 5 standards and APIs; 80-plus Ajax-enabled JSF 1.2-based rich client components; an enhanced ADF Render Kit, for improved Flash rendering; and new Web services support, including JAX-WS-compliant Web services generation from existing code or WSDL.

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