2007 Tech Trends

The Java Developer’s Journal has published the results of it’s end-of-year poll of various Internet technology players which makes for some good reading. Here are a couple I found interesting:
Jason Bell, Editorial Board Member, Java Developer’s Journal:

Incremental mainstream adoption of Ruby on Rails
It’s going to happen, isn’t it? Keep an eye out for Sun’s offering of JRuby. Whether this is the death of other open source scripting languages like Groovy remains to be seen. Ruby has been a wake-up call and has now drawn the line dividing serious scripting languages from “hobby” languages (ones that wouldn’t see enterprise adoption). For me, my job just got a whole lot easier, a whole lot quicker.

David Heinemeier Hansson, Creator of (Ruby on) Rails:

2007 will be the year where LAMPers finally decide to stop being neutral about the WS-* mess and pick the side of REST: the next wave of Web APIs will stop supplying both a SOAP and REST API and just go with the latter.

Gary Cornell, Founder & Publisher, Apress:

-IE 7 will have a fast adoption curve and so Firefox will cease gaining market share.
-The AJAX bandwagon will gain even more speed.
-Ruby’s momentum will slow down as Python and PHP frameworks to combat Rails grow in popularity.
-The open-sourcing of Java will have no effect whatsoever on Java’s slow decline in favor of dynamic languages (Ruby, Python) and C#.
-Apple will no longer gain market share for its desktops and will stabilize at its current meaningless level.
-Ultra lightweight notebooks based on flash memory with instant on/off will start coming out in large numbers.

I agree that so-called dynamic languages and frameworks will make big gains in ’07 but feel pretty optimistic about the prospects for non Ruby on Rails flavors too. Groovy and Grails is primed to be pretty big and while I don’t think it will overtake RoR in the next year, there are significant advantages that make the prospects for Groovy and its framework Grails to become very mainstream, look very good.
From a press release on the new book: The Definitive Guide to Grails:

Ruby on Rails is hot, but it seems that more recent noise from the Java community has been focused on Groovy and its framework, Grails. Taking inspiration from innovative frameworks like Ruby on Rails, or the likes of Django or TurboGears, Grails makes simple things simpler, harder things possible, and brings back the fun of creating web applications. Continuing to affirm the hype, Guillaume Laforge and Dierk König, remark “Grails definitely has an ambitious name for being the Holy Grail all application developers have sought so far. But more than a mere ambition, Grails fulfills its promises by letting you be more productive than you could have ever thought possible.”
The Grails Framework is an open source, lightweight, agile Web development framework that leverages Groovy, an open source, lightweight, agile and dynamic Java-based scripting language, and complements Java web development. Grails is the ideal framework for developing in the web tier for Java developers and exemplifies the power of the Groovy language and its APIs.

I for one believe that there are too many Java developers out there (their community still dwarfs the next largest one) that are very interested in lightweight frameworks and rapid development but are not too keen on “throwing out” years of experience with the most popular language out here. Groovy in combination with the Grails framework offers the best of both of these worlds and I think people are just waiting for someone to really take up and champion Grails as David Heinemeier Hansson and 37signals have done for Rails.
If you are new to Groovy or Grails, this interview with Groovy project manager Guillaume Laforge is a good primer for learning about Groovy and Grails and where it stands in its current development.

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One response to this post.

  1. Why does Ruby on Rails always remind me of a 3D space shooting game? I imagine a game like Rez with lots of jewels and sparkly objects flying around.

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