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Jakarta EE interview series: Meet Michael Hofmann

Understanding Jakarta EE: “Combining Jakarta EE with MicroProfile could slow down the progress of MicroProfile”

Jakarta EE
© Shutterstock / igor kisselev

Confused about what’s going on with Jakarta EE? This interview series is meant to help you navigate through all the changes and understand where it’s headed, as well as how Jakarta EE plans to become the new home of cloud-native Java. Our 12th guest is Michael Hofmann, freelance consultant, developer, coach, speaker, and author. Let’s dive deeper into the Jakarta EE universe!

Jakarta EE: The story so far

Transfering Java EE technologies from Oracle to the Eclipse Foundation is no easy job. The Jakarta EE brand is evolving rapidly but we need to stop for a minute and acknowledge all the changes and plans which will include the platform’s evolution into cloud, containers, microservices, serverless, and reactive technologies.

The vision for the technical future of Jakarta EE includes the following:

  • Enhanced support for microservices architecture
  • Move to Cloud Native Java, which includes better integrations with technologies like Docker and Kubernetes
  • Increase the pace of innovation
  • Build a vibrant developer community
  • Provide production quality reference implementations

Update: The results of the Participant and Committer Member elections for representatives to the Jakarta EE Working Group Steering Committee, Specification Committee, and Marketing & Brand Committee have just been announced.

  • Specification Committee – Participant: Alex Theedom (LJC)
  • Specification Committee – Committer Member: Werner Keil
  • Marketing & Brand Committee – Participant: Simon Maple (LJC)
  • Marketing & Brand Committee – Committer Member: Ivar Grimstad
  • Steering Committee – Participant: Martijn Verburg (LJC)
  • Steering Committee – Committer Member: Ivar Grimstad

If you want to learn more about the Jakarta EE Working Group governance and processes, have a look at the Jakarta EE Working Group Charter page.

Now back to our series! Keeping track of what’s in and what’s out is still a work in progress, but here’s what we know for certain. While there may be some other proposals that are still pending, these are the projects that have been accepted. This list should help you keep track of Jakarta EE’s progress but we’ve only scratched the surface.

What are the current and future challenges of Jakarta EE? How is it forging a new path forwards for enterprise Java? Where is it headed? This interview series is meant to help you navigate through all the changes and understand where it’s headed, as well as how Jakarta EE plans to become the new home of cloud-native Java.

Jakarta EE series: Here are the interviews published so far

  • David Heffelfinger: “I wouldn’t like to see Jakarta EE tied to any specific container orchestration tool”
  • Markus Eisele: “I strongly believe there is a lot to do to make Jakarta EE ready for the future”
  • Josh Juneau: “The platform needs to evolve more dynamically than it had done in the past”
  • Werner Keil“Jakarta EE should become more modular than it is right now”
  • Ondrej Mihalyi“MicroProfile is paving the way for better microservices support in the Jakarta EE ecosystem”
  • Reza Rahman“Modularity is key to faster release cycles”
  • Dmitry Kornilov“Jakarta EE APIs should be more cloud-friendly”
  • Arjan Tijms“Recognizing the importance of Kubernetes likely means a further reduction in the importance of running multiple applications on a single Jakarta EE server”
  • Richard Monson-Haefel“Jakarta EE 9 will begin the transition to a simpler, lighter, and more flexible platform”
  • Otávio Gonçalves de Santana“Jakarta EE tools should support Kubernetes”
  • Guillermo González de Agüero“MicroProfile saved Java EE & will have a key role in its cloud-native transformation”

Now it’s time to welcome our next guest, Michael Hofmann, freelance consultant, developer, coach, speaker, and author. Let’s dive deeper into the Jakarta EE universe!

asap

JAXenter: Would it be a good idea to merge Eclipse MicroProfile with Jakarta EE?

Michael Hofmann: The MicroProfile specification community is doing a good job of compensating the gap to other frameworks for cloud development. There is still some work to do, to close the gaps. I think combining Jakarta EE with MicroProfile could slow down the progress of MicroProfile, therefore it is better to keep them in separate projects.

But, and this is essential for me, there must always be a synchronization between MicroProfile and Jakarta EE. It must be clear that MicroProfile is a part of Jakarta EE. Indeed, this is already true. MicroProfile made version 2.0 of their specifications which is only done to get in synch with JEE 8.

JAXenter: Jakarta EE’s path has already been chosen, and that’s cloud-native. How will this goal be achieved?

There must always be a synchronization between MicroProfile and Jakarta EE.

Michael Hofmann: The cloud-native direction of Jakarta EE is correct and this must be achieved by integrating MicroProfile, but in a way, as described in the previous answer.

JAXenter: How can Jakarta EE evolve to meet users’ cloud needs?

Michael Hofmann: Jakarta EE could be in a close relation to CNCF, where cloud-native requirements are addressed. First, you need the infrastructure and this is done in CNCF. And after that, Jakarta EE can check how to help the developers to get their applications run on these systems.

JAXenter: Let’s focus on the Jakarta EE survey results. Over 60% of the respondents want better support for microservices. How would you implement that?

Michael Hofmann: Again in using MicroProfile. But there is one element missing: service registries. This could be compensated by using Istio on top of the cloud infrastructure to get this job done.

JAXenter: Speaking of the survey, the second most desired aspect is native integration with Kubernetes. Should this be a priority for the development of the project?

Michael Hofmann: Kubernetes has become the major platform for cloud systems and, in combination with Istio, you get a lot of useful functions for cloud-native systems. I think, following the system with the highest market share, which is open source and not coming from a single vendor, is a good choice to integrate into Jakarta EE, or better in MicroProfile.

SEE ALSO: How well do you know your Eclipse MicroProfile trivia?

JAXenter: Would you prefer faster releases (like Java’s new release cadence) or slower, yet bigger feature releases?

Michael Hofmann: Big releases are always coming at low speed. The area of cloud systems is in a ramp-up period and things change from day to day. So it is essential to react in a timely manner to the movements. Therefore, it would be better to have short release cycles.

JAXenter: How do you plan to participate in the development process of Jakarta EE? Any specs or TCKs you’re especially interested in?

Michael Hofmann: I’m interested in MicroProfile and there are some specs in discussion: Long Running Actions (LRA) or better known as Saga and service mesh. Both specs are necessary for a larger system of microservices.

Thank you!

 

Our Jakarta EE interview series is published three times a week. Join us on a journey to the depths of Jakarta EE!

Author
Gabriela Motroc
Gabriela Motroc is editor of JAXenter.com and JAX Magazine. Before working at Software & Support Media Group, she studied International Communication Management at the Hague University of Applied Sciences.

Dominik Mohilo
Dominik Mohilo studied German and sociology at the Frankfurt University, and works at S&S Media since 2015.

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