Try it, I insist

Vaadin framework releases first 7.0.0 beta

Elliot Bentley
vaadin-71

The latest version of the server-side framework introduces some drastic changes to the API as well as SASS support.

Java
web frameworks may be a dime a dozen, but Vaadin has marked itself
out as different with its placing of logic on the server side, and
with version 7 the company hopes to improve the framework even
further. Today saw the release of the first beta,
which brings with it a host of dramatic changes.

In development since October 2011, Vaadin 7 is a major
rewrite
designed
to “Give more power and freedom to developers”, “make
extending and plugging Vaadin simpler” and “clean up where it
smells”.

This first beta
release
includes a whole host of changes to the API, as well as
support for trendy (and useful) CSS scripting language
SASS
and a new packaging system. It’s also been split into
seven separate jar files, rather than the single, giant 50MB jar
the alpha was delivered in.

“The new way of building with Vaadin is UI,” writes CEO Joonas
Lehtinen in the announcement blog post, illustrating the dramatic
changes with a radically different ‘hello world’.

public class MyVaadinUI extends UI {
  protected void init(final WrappedRequest request) { 
     addComponent(new Label("Hello world!"));
  }
}

New features already introduced in Vaadin 7 alphas include a new
windowing API, a new communication layer, JavaScript extensions and
the inclusion of Google Web Toolkit. The latter was originally

announced
at Google I/O, increasing Vaadin’s scope to include
the client side. In addition, an agreement with Google means they
are allowed to contribute to the GWT source.

Unfortunately, a few features failed to make the cut, including
server-push, taglib, WAI-ARIA support, and support for on-the-fly
translation, which will be included “in a future minor release”. In
addition, while the team originally planned to have 7.0.0 ready for
JavaOne next month, they’ve admitted that “we really do not know
the exact release date” – and that they will “keep releasing weekly
updates to beta” until it’s ready.

With over 80,000 users active on the portal alone (and likely more
actually implementing the framework), Vaadin appears to be going
from strength to strength. The 7.0.0 beta is
available to test out now
, despite a few “rough edges”, though
you may want to check over the API changes documented in the
Vaadin
7 Migration Guide
.

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