Matt RaibleMatt Raible is a Java Champion and Developer Advocate at Okta.

The JHipster Mini-Book The JHipster Mini-Book is a guide to getting started with hip technologies today: Angular, Bootstrap, and Spring Boot. All of these frameworks are wrapped up in an easy-to-use project called JHipster.

This book shows you how to build an app with JHipster, and guides you through the plethora of tools, techniques and options you can use. Furthermore, it explains the UI and API building blocks so you understand the underpinnings of your great application.

For book updates, follow @jhipster-book on Twitter.


Over 10 years ago, I wrote my first blog post. Since then, I've authored books, had kids, traveled the world, found Trish and blogged about it all.

Choosing an Ajax Framework

This past week, my colleagues and I have been researching Ajax Frameworks. We're working on a project that's following SOFEA-style architecture principles and we want the best framework for our needs. I'm writing this post to see 1) if you, the community, agree with our selection process and 2) to learn about your experiences with the frameworks we're evaluating. Below is the process we're following to make our choice.

  1. Choose a short list of frameworks to prototype with.
  2. Create an application prototype with each framework.
  3. Document findings and create a matrix with important criteria.
  4. Create presentation to summarize document.
  5. Deliver document, presentation (with demos) and recommendation.

For #1, we chose Ext JS, Dojo, YUI and GWT because we feel these Ajax libraries offer the most UI widgets. We also considered Prototype/Scriptaculous, jQuery and MooTools, but decided against them because of their lack of UI widgets.

For #2, we time-boxed ourselves to 3 days of development. In addition to basic functionality, we added several features (i.e. edit in place, drag and drop, calendar widgets, transitions, charts, grid) that might be used in the production application. We all were able to complete most of the functionality of the application. Of course, there's still some code cleanup as well as styling to make each app look good for the demo. The nice thing about doing this is we're able to look at each others code and see how the same thing is done in each framework. None of us are experts in any of the frameworks, so it's possible we could do things better. However, I think it's good we all started somewhat green because it shows what's possible for someone relatively new to the frameworks.

For #3, we're creating a document with the following outline:


Ajax Framework Candidates
(intro and explanation)

  Project Information
  (license / cost)
  (number of committers)
  (support options)
  (mailing list traffic (nov/dec 2008))

Matrix and Notes


For the Matrix referenced in the outline above, we're using a table with weights and ranks:

Weight Criteria Dojo YUI GWT Ext JS Notes
# Important Criteria for Customer 0..1 0..1 0..1 0..1 Notes about rankings

Our strategy for filling in this matrix:

  • Customer adjusts the weight for each criteria (removing/adding as needed) so all weights add up to 1.
  • We rank each framework with 0, .5 or 1 where 0 = doesn't satisfy criteria, .5 = partially satisfies, 1 = satisfies.

The list of criteria provided to us by our client is as follows (in no particular order).

  • Quality of Documentation/Tutorials/Self Help
  • Browser support (most important browsers/versions based on web stats)
  • Testability (esp. Selenium compatibility)
  • Licensing
  • Project health/adoption
  • Performance
  • Scalability
  • Flexibility/extensibility
  • Productivity (app dev, web dev)
  • Richness of widget/component library
  • Charting capability
  • Ability to create new widgets
  • Match to existing Java team skill-set
  • Ease of deployment (on Ops, QA, Users)
  • Degree of risk generally
  • Ability to integrate with existing site (which includes Prototype)
  • Easy to style with CSS
  • Validation (esp. marking form elements invalid)
  • Component Theme-ing/Decoration
  • CDN Availability (i.e. Google's Ajax Libraries API or Ext CDN)

What do you think? How could this process be improved? Of course, if you have framework answers (0, .5 or 1) for our matrix, we'd love to hear your opinions.

Posted in Java at Jan 08 2009, 09:36:22 PM MST 39 Comments

R.I.P. Giant FCR3

This week, I started a new gig at a new office in downtown Denver. On the first day, I was disappointed to find our building doesn't allow bikes inside. The next day, I went out and bought a new lock. Today, I walked out for the ride home to discover my bike had been stolen. :'(

At first I was shocked, then pissed, and then I noticed my lock was still there. This means, 1) I didn't wrap it around a tube or 2) someone cracked the lock and re-locked it. Of course, I find it hard to believe after all these years that I'd miss the tube when locking my bike. However, it'd be pretty strange if someone stole it and then went through the trouble to lock the lock again. Regardless, the awesome commuter I bought over 3 years ago is gone. You will be missed my friend.

New Commuter - Giant FCR3

Rather than buying a new one, I think it's a good opportunity to take things up a notch and start running to work instead. It's 6 miles and surely doable with some practice. There's also a good chance it's the worst idea I've had in a long time.

Update: Running wasn't too bad.

Posted in General at Jan 08 2009, 09:08:37 PM MST 9 Comments