What's In Store for Java SE, Java EE, NetBeans, GlassFish and JavaFX?

JavaOne Opening Keynote

The announcements came thick and fast during the opening keynote of JavaOne 2010 yesterday.

Thomas Kurian, executive vice president of Oracle Product Development gave the Java community a long-awaited insight into Oracle's plans for the future of Java, including announcements regarding JavaFX and Java EE.

Java SE will get extended support for scripting languages and will be optimised for new application models and hardware. When it comes to Java on the Client, Oracle is planning an “enhanced programming model,” that promises to combine the power of Java with the ease of JavaFX, in an attempt to optimise graphics and deliver enhanced HTML 5, JavaScript and CSS Web capabilities, and native Java platform support. Java SE will implement plan B, namely deliver JDK 7 minus Lambda, Jigsaw, and part of the Coin project in mid 2011; and release JDK 8 including Lambda, Jigsaw and the rest of Coin, in late 2012. More details are expected to emerge during Mark Reinhold's 'Java SE: The Road Ahead' keynote on Tuesday.

Java EE will continue to be developed, with improvements in areas such as dependency injection and reduced configuration requirements. Oracle is also focusing on bringing Java with Web support to consumer devices, with enhancements such as small-footprint CPU-efficient capabilities for cards, phones and TVs, and new language features, in the pipeline. Java ME, and not Java FX Mobile, will become the strategic mobile platform.

Thomas Kurian also had some good news for NetBeans fans, citing a 20% increase in NetBeans users in the last six months. There were some concerns from the NetBeans community that Oracle would neglect NetBeans in favour of its own JDeveloper IDE – which is not just a product, but is tightly integrated into Oracle's tool suite - or even Eclipse, to which Oracle contributes. Adam Bien blogged that Netbeans was “covered more intensively, than last year,” during the Keynote.

Alexis Moussine-Pouchkin was similarly impressed with the GlassFish coverage. Oracle promised two new releases of GlassFish in 2011 and revealed that GlassFish's HK2 kernel will be included in Oracle's WebLogic Server. “GlassFish got more mentions (including for its HK2 kernel making it's way into WebLogic) than in any previous JavaOne keynote,” Alexis Moussine-Pouchkin blogged.

Java FX Script is to be deprecated and Java libraries will be exposed instead. This will open up JavaFX capabilities to Java developers, removing the prerequisite of learning a new scripting language. Oracle will introduce a new set of JavaFX APIs, which will be a variation on typical JavaBeans Properties and listeners. They will be designed to play well with lambda expressions. These changes will facilitate using JavaFX from other dynamic languages, such as JRuby and Groovy, and using other system languages that run on the JVM for writing large JavaFX applications. More information on all the changes taking place on planet JavaFX, is available at the 'JavaFX 2010-2011 Roadmap.'

Initial reaction to this news seems positive, with Ian Skerrett tweeting “nice to see the changes to JavaFX,” and Java developer Jason Lee admitting “I'm kind of glad JavaFX script has been nixed. I'd kinda like to play with JFX, but don't have time to learn JFX Script well,” suggesting the 'new look' JavaFX has won at least one new convert.

A full round-up of the announcement is available at the Oracle Press Release.

Jessica Thornsby

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