Weblogic Authors: Yeshim Deniz, Elizabeth White, Michael Meiner, Michael Bushong, Avi Rosenthal

Related Topics: Weblogic

Weblogic: Article

Adding Internationalization to Business Objects

Teaching your objects to speak Klingon

Using ResourceBundle - The Java Way
J2SE applications store all locale-specific resources in classes called resource bundles. Resource bundles support internationalization by separating localized data from the code that uses it. Each ResourceBundle instance contains localized resources for a particular locale, usually loaded from a file. A resource bundle is a map of key/value pairs, where keys are the names that are shared across locales, and values are the resources localized to the resource bundle's locale. Application code references locale-specific resources by key rather than storing them directly. It works well for transactional applications with modest UIs, e.g., online banking, where language-dependent features are limited to a few thousand messages. However, this approach would never scale to millions of messages. Moreover, since bundle keys are typically used in the application code, the code has to be changed if you want to add even a single new message. Ironically, adding support for a whole new language can be done without touching the code; however, you can guess which has a bigger effect on application maintainability. Finally, it offers no help in internationalization of Business Objects - referencing bundle keys form database schema would lead to an integrity maintenance nightmare, and bundles are loaded atomically, which leads to scalability issues when working with large datasets.

Directories, Tags & Tools - The WebLogic Way
The WLP I18N framework builds on the ResourceBundle approach and adds a number of useful features and capabilities:

  • Tag i18n:getMessage provides a convenient wrapper around MessageBundle. It now supports reloadable and non-escaped message bundles.
  • Tag i18n:localize allows defining the language, country, variant, and base bundle name to be used throughout a page.
  • Tags l10n:include, l10n:forward, and l10n:resolve can be used for searching for a localized version of the page.
  • The framework looks up and loads localized copies of resources, such as portals, portlet files, skeleton files, portlet content JSPs, static HTML, and image files contained in locale directories.
  • Localization of component property pages through locale markup in the portal administration.
  • Ability to add custom locale providers.
Although WLS does not offer any specific tools for internationalization, the above tag libraries are available in the Workshop and should be usable in non-portal applications built on the WebLogic platform.

Since BEA's I18N framework is based on the standard J2SE internationalization technology, taking aside the convenience, they exhibit identical weaknesses. And although the Portal stores some locale markup data in the database, the lookup and retrieval mechanism is encapsulated in the framework and is not open to the applications for use with their own data.

Polyglot Architecture
When it became apparent that none of the existing internationalization technologies can meet the above requirements either as-is or with minimal enhancements, we set out to design our own, code-named Polyglot. Our approach is centered on the use of Polyglot objects in place of all language-dependent attributes of Business Objects and presentation elements. This allows all language information to be carried with the object throughout its life cycle within Model and Controller layers. The language-specific rendering is deferred to the View, permitting a single entity to be accessed by multiple users who want to see it in different languages.

Adding Polyglot to an existing application is as simple as changing the type of all language-dependent attributes from String to Polyglot. For example, the top left corner of the Food Portal model from Figure 1 will now look as shown in Figure 3.

The database schema will change as shown in Figure 4. As you can see all language-dependent columns are replaced with foreign keys to the Polyglot table that consists of a Polyglot_ID, which serves as a primary key, and a VARCHAR column for each supported locale. The column names match Java locale names exactly. The first column designates the default locale and is not nullable. All other values are optional.

No two Web applications are exactly alike, and neither are their internationalization and performance requirements. To give portal developers a wider range of options, the Polyglot framework shown in Figure 5 comes with three different concrete implementations, which offer different language resolution strategies. They all implement Polyglot interface and share a common base class PolyglotBase. The main method toString() takes a single argument, identifying desired locale, and returns localized value. A second toString() without parameters returns the value for the default locale.

Class PolyDictionary is a singleton that reads the meta-information from the polyglot table. It keeps the list of supported locales, and keeps track of the default locale. Method getLocaleId() finds closest available matching locale for a requested locale, e.g., for the polyglot table presented in Figure 4 it would return en_US_POSIX for en_US, en for en_UK and de_CH for de. It also assigns integer indexes to locales that are used for fast access to values.

Polyglot Implementations
Class BundleGlot is the most lightweight Polyglot implementation and is perfect for applications with a smaller number of language-dependent messages. It uses class PolyglotBundle to bulk-load the entire Polyglot table into memory, so BundleGlot instances contain just the ID. It has similar or better performance than the ResourceBundle. However, since it uses the same database schema and Java infrastructure as the other two, it can always be scaled up transparently to the rest of the application as the message count increases.

Class SimpleGlot is the direct implementation of the Polyglot pattern; it contains the message values for all of the supported languages, which are read from the database at the same time as the parent object. This option works best for applications that have a large or volatile set of messages but need to support just a few languages.

Finally, DeferredGlot offers the most scalable option in terms of number of messages and supported languages, beyond the limits of when caching stops being feasible. Similarly to BundleGlot, its instances only contain the ID. However, instead of preloading the messages, it does quite the opposite. Its method toString() uses the PlaceholderPattern object to create specially formatted placeholders containing polyglot ID and resolved locale values. The application then uses a response Filter to parse ServletResponse and find all of the placeholders. Having determined all of the message/locale combinations required for rendering the current page, polyglot filter reads all of the values from the database in a single hit, and replaces the placeholders with the appropriate messages.

Polyglot architecture offers a useful alternative to the internationalization mechanisms available in Java and specifically in the WebLogic platform. It can be used to meet performance and volume requirements of a wide variety of Portals and other Web Applications, and is free from many of the limitations of solutions based on ResourceBundle. Polyglots offer a uniform internationalization mechanism, spanning the Model to the View layers, and can be used to handle tasks on both ends of the spectrum, thus offering a universal and scalable approach to internationalization.


More Stories By Alex Maclinovsky

Alex works at Sun Microsystems as the Engineering Manager for Sun SOA Governance Solution. For nearly two decades he architected and built distributed systems on enterprise, national and global scale. Alex specializes in SOA Infrastructure, Security and Composite Applications. He blogs at http://blogs.sun.com/RealSOA/ and can be contacted at [email protected]

Comments (0)

Share your thoughts on this story.

Add your comment
You must be signed in to add a comment. Sign-in | Register

In accordance with our Comment Policy, we encourage comments that are on topic, relevant and to-the-point. We will remove comments that include profanity, personal attacks, racial slurs, threats of violence, or other inappropriate material that violates our Terms and Conditions, and will block users who make repeated violations. We ask all readers to expect diversity of opinion and to treat one another with dignity and respect.

@ThingsExpo Stories
With tough new regulations coming to Europe on data privacy in May 2018, Calligo will explain why in reality the effect is global and transforms how you consider critical data. EU GDPR fundamentally rewrites the rules for cloud, Big Data and IoT. In his session at 21st Cloud Expo, Adam Ryan, Vice President and General Manager EMEA at Calligo, examined the regulations and provided insight on how it affects technology, challenges the established rules and will usher in new levels of diligence arou...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Evatronix will exhibit at SYS-CON's 21st International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Evatronix SA offers comprehensive solutions in the design and implementation of electronic systems, in CAD / CAM deployment, and also is a designer and manufacturer of advanced 3D scanners for professional applications.
SYS-CON Events announced today that Synametrics Technologies will exhibit at SYS-CON's 22nd International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 5-7, 2018, at the Javits Center in New York, NY. Synametrics Technologies is a privately held company based in Plainsboro, New Jersey that has been providing solutions for the developer community since 1997. Based on the success of its initial product offerings such as WinSQL, Xeams, SynaMan and Syncrify, Synametrics continues to create and hone inn...
Cloud Expo | DXWorld Expo have announced the conference tracks for Cloud Expo 2018. Cloud Expo will be held June 5-7, 2018, at the Javits Center in New York City, and November 6-8, 2018, at the Santa Clara Convention Center, Santa Clara, CA. Digital Transformation (DX) is a major focus with the introduction of DX Expo within the program. Successful transformation requires a laser focus on being data-driven and on using all the tools available that enable transformation if they plan to survive ov...
A strange thing is happening along the way to the Internet of Things, namely far too many devices to work with and manage. It has become clear that we'll need much higher efficiency user experiences that can allow us to more easily and scalably work with the thousands of devices that will soon be in each of our lives. Enter the conversational interface revolution, combining bots we can literally talk with, gesture to, and even direct with our thoughts, with embedded artificial intelligence, whic...
To get the most out of their data, successful companies are not focusing on queries and data lakes, they are actively integrating analytics into their operations with a data-first application development approach. Real-time adjustments to improve revenues, reduce costs, or mitigate risk rely on applications that minimize latency on a variety of data sources. In his session at @BigDataExpo, Jack Norris, Senior Vice President, Data and Applications at MapR Technologies, reviewed best practices to ...
Smart cities have the potential to change our lives at so many levels for citizens: less pollution, reduced parking obstacles, better health, education and more energy savings. Real-time data streaming and the Internet of Things (IoT) possess the power to turn this vision into a reality. However, most organizations today are building their data infrastructure to focus solely on addressing immediate business needs vs. a platform capable of quickly adapting emerging technologies to address future ...
In his session at 21st Cloud Expo, Raju Shreewastava, founder of Big Data Trunk, provided a fun and simple way to introduce Machine Leaning to anyone and everyone. He solved a machine learning problem and demonstrated an easy way to be able to do machine learning without even coding. Raju Shreewastava is the founder of Big Data Trunk (www.BigDataTrunk.com), a Big Data Training and consulting firm with offices in the United States. He previously led the data warehouse/business intelligence and B...
"Digital transformation - what we knew about it in the past has been redefined. Automation is going to play such a huge role in that because the culture, the technology, and the business operations are being shifted now," stated Brian Boeggeman, VP of Alliances & Partnerships at Ayehu, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 21st Cloud Expo, held Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.
"Evatronix provides design services to companies that need to integrate the IoT technology in their products but they don't necessarily have the expertise, knowledge and design team to do so," explained Adam Morawiec, VP of Business Development at Evatronix, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at @ThingsExpo, held Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.
The 22nd International Cloud Expo | 1st DXWorld Expo has announced that its Call for Papers is open. Cloud Expo | DXWorld Expo, to be held June 5-7, 2018, at the Javits Center in New York, NY, brings together Cloud Computing, Digital Transformation, Big Data, Internet of Things, DevOps, Machine Learning and WebRTC to one location. With cloud computing driving a higher percentage of enterprise IT budgets every year, it becomes increasingly important to plant your flag in this fast-expanding busin...
In his Opening Keynote at 21st Cloud Expo, John Considine, General Manager of IBM Cloud Infrastructure, led attendees through the exciting evolution of the cloud. He looked at this major disruption from the perspective of technology, business models, and what this means for enterprises of all sizes. John Considine is General Manager of Cloud Infrastructure Services at IBM. In that role he is responsible for leading IBM’s public cloud infrastructure including strategy, development, and offering m...
Nordstrom is transforming the way that they do business and the cloud is the key to enabling speed and hyper personalized customer experiences. In his session at 21st Cloud Expo, Ken Schow, VP of Engineering at Nordstrom, discussed some of the key learnings and common pitfalls of large enterprises moving to the cloud. This includes strategies around choosing a cloud provider(s), architecture, and lessons learned. In addition, he covered some of the best practices for structured team migration an...
No hype cycles or predictions of a gazillion things here. IoT is here. You get it. You know your business and have great ideas for a business transformation strategy. What comes next? Time to make it happen. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Jay Mason, an Associate Partner of Analytics, IoT & Cybersecurity at M&S Consulting, presented a step-by-step plan to develop your technology implementation strategy. He also discussed the evaluation of communication standards and IoT messaging protocols, data...
Recently, REAN Cloud built a digital concierge for a North Carolina hospital that had observed that most patient call button questions were repetitive. In addition, the paper-based process used to measure patient health metrics was laborious, not in real-time and sometimes error-prone. In their session at 21st Cloud Expo, Sean Finnerty, Executive Director, Practice Lead, Health Care & Life Science at REAN Cloud, and Dr. S.P.T. Krishnan, Principal Architect at REAN Cloud, discussed how they built...
22nd International Cloud Expo, taking place June 5-7, 2018, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY, and co-located with the 1st DXWorld Expo will feature technical sessions from a rock star conference faculty and the leading industry players in the world. Cloud computing is now being embraced by a majority of enterprises of all sizes. Yesterday's debate about public vs. private has transformed into the reality of hybrid cloud: a recent survey shows that 74% of enterprises have a hybrid cloud ...
22nd International Cloud Expo, taking place June 5-7, 2018, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY, and co-located with the 1st DXWorld Expo will feature technical sessions from a rock star conference faculty and the leading industry players in the world. Cloud computing is now being embraced by a majority of enterprises of all sizes. Yesterday's debate about public vs. private has transformed into the reality of hybrid cloud: a recent survey shows that 74% of enterprises have a hybrid cloud ...
DevOps at Cloud Expo – being held June 5-7, 2018, at the Javits Center in New York, NY – announces that its Call for Papers is open. Born out of proven success in agile development, cloud computing, and process automation, DevOps is a macro trend you cannot afford to miss. From showcase success stories from early adopters and web-scale businesses, DevOps is expanding to organizations of all sizes, including the world's largest enterprises – and delivering real results. Among the proven benefits,...
@DevOpsSummit at Cloud Expo, taking place June 5-7, 2018, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY, is co-located with 22nd Cloud Expo | 1st DXWorld Expo and will feature technical sessions from a rock star conference faculty and the leading industry players in the world. The widespread success of cloud computing is driving the DevOps revolution in enterprise IT. Now as never before, development teams must communicate and collaborate in a dynamic, 24/7/365 environment. There is no time to wait...
SYS-CON Events announced today that T-Mobile exhibited at SYS-CON's 20th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. As America's Un-carrier, T-Mobile US, Inc., is redefining the way consumers and businesses buy wireless services through leading product and service innovation. The Company's advanced nationwide 4G LTE network delivers outstanding wireless experiences to 67.4 million customers who are unwilling to compromise on qua...