armtuk: Cheetah (Default)
super computer science geekness here )
armtuk: Cheetah (Default)
So a bunch of books arrived on various Java frameworks. I had a conversation on the #java channel on freenode and most people pan struts. They say that struts 1.0 was awful, and struts 2.0 is just about usable, but pretty bad. I asked what they thought of JSF (Java Server Faces) and they said that it's kind like asp.net in java, not really a ringing endorsement. The guy didn't like Spring MVC at all, described it as a train wreck. They liked wicket though, and didn't have much comment on stripes. The user in question had already validated himself by describing the very subtle difference between passing by reference, and passing a reference by value, which is a very subtle but important detail in Java, amongst other pearls of wisdom, so he wasn't a complete n00b. The drunk guy spouting aspersions about java.io.File suggested Groovy, but I haven't really looked at that yet, as you know, this was the drunk guy who was trying to re-invent Spring, and couldn't deal with cross platform file access. One of the Groovy guys is on the Java podcast I listen to (Java Posse), so I suppose that speaks well of it.

A guy who I worked with on another project had suggested stripes, and this is a person I have a lot of respect for, so I bought the stripes book, which is in beta, so I got a PDF, and they'll send me a book when it's ready. The upside was that I had a PDF to work with straight away, so I've spent the last couple of days reading on Stripes. It's pretty cool so far. It does a lot of sensible things very sensibly :). I like the general principle of convention over configuration, which is something Stripes in hot on.

I am guessing the wicket book will probably arrive Tuesday or Wednesday, and I'll have a look at that. I have a couple of projects that I need to do in the short term time frame so I need to make a decision pretty soon.

Spring MVC

Oct. 6th, 2008 09:11 pm
armtuk: Cheetah (Default)
Took a good look through the new Spring book over the weekend. I was hoping that Spring MVC would be the answer to all my prayers about a web based framework. It wasn't to be. I wish there was something that was between single controller, and portlets. The portlet spec sucks, and the documentation for it is lousy. There's like two books, one is on JSR-268, and the other is on JSR-168, and they both suck. Spring only supports JSR-168 at the moment anyway, and it seems kinda stupid to work with a technology that's already been obsolete for like three years. There seem to be zero docs on themeing, which is like the first thing you want to do with your portlets.

Anyway - I've ordered the newest good struts book I could see in the vague hope that struts has improved since I last looked at it. It seemed like a whole bunch of XML nightmare last time I worked with it that could be achieved with a well written web.xml and dispatcher forwarding (which is what I used in consultant-helper).

Somebody else I talked to recommended stripes, so I'm hoping to get the book on that when I get paid.

I also had got the book on JSF too that I was hoping wouldn't suck, but it doesn't look too hopeful.

It all seems that MVC is just fundamentally wrong. You don't have _a_ model, and _a_ view and _a_ controller. You have input data sets that need processing and then output data sets that all need initializing to render an output that are totally independent of each other. What's in the output fundamentally affects which data you want. One view of the output, say an XHTML page will want all the associated bits and pieces, headers, nav, other things you might like, latest news for this product/item etc. And the XML view just needs the basic data. Somewhere, something needs to know all this and initialize the Models appropriately based on what needs to be in the view. That's right folks, the view needs to drive the model, not the other way around. How else do you explain that pagination is fundamentally a view centric operation, but anybody in their right mind will implement it at the Model level, not the view level, because passing 2000 records through to the view from the database is stupid.

Also - why do we need a separate dispatcher from the web server? URLs are great for telling the system which page you want. Why not keep using them instead of re-inventing the wheel?
armtuk: Cheetah (Default)
In other news, my Spring 2.5 book came, which is exciting. So far I have really enjoyed Spring as a platform, and I'm looking forward to expanding my understanding of it. Now I have a bit more time it looks like, I should be able to find the time to study the book and get up to speed on some of the other useful features of Spring other than just Dependency Injection.

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