Currently, the default web framework in AppFuse is Struts. It's nothing fancy like Shale or Struts Ti, but rather Struts Classic. Even though Struts is not dead it's a pain in the ass to work with compared to other MVC frameworks like Spring MVC and WebWork. Yesterday, on the AppFuse Mailing List, I kicked off an informal poll about switching to a different default web framework. I think most of the people that choose Struts w/ AppFuse are choosing it b/c it's the default. Making another framework the default would likely same quite a few users a lot of headaches.
So which one should I make the default? Here's my thoughts from the mailing list thread:
I like Spring MVC and WebWork better than Struts, but I believe that
WebWork is much easier to understand and develop with. Unfortunately,
it's not well documented or marketed, so it's a bit difficult when you
run into snags. Of course, if you contact the user community via
forums or e-mail, answers flow quickly.
I'd like to use the framework that's simplest to understand. Right now, in my eyes, that's WebWork. I think JSF and Tapestry are excellent too (as component-based frameworks), but Tapestry's learning curve is difficult and JSF has a lot of issues (like everything is a post). Hopefully things will get better with JSF 1.2, but it's probably another 6 months before MyFaces supports 1.2 - let alone the app servers.
Maybe we should just drop Struts altogether - or replace it with Struts Ti? Unfortunately, it'll probably be a while before it's ready for production (I doubt it's that useable now).
Of course, if a WebWork Book was out - this move would be a lot easier. I did talk to Patrick Lightbody on IM yesterday and he said "it's done" and supposedly he has copies, but I haven't seen anything on the WebWork Blog to prove this.
A related question: how much would it hurt AppFuse if I dropped Struts altogether and went with something like Wicket instead? I'd like to keep that cap at 5 web frameworks. If I dropped Struts and added Wicket, I might lose potential users, which might not be a bad thing.