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WebLogic Blog Round-Up

Around the WebLogic world in 80 blogs

If one of the true signs of a vibrant developer community is an active blogosphere surrounding a technology, then the WebLogic family of technologies certainly passes that test with flying colors. In case you're not yet active yourself, WLDJ brings you a comprehensive selection from some of the best known (and many of the not so well-known too). Don't forget that you can blog yourself now, too, at the WLDJ site - you can get started in just three minutes at http://blog-n-play.com.

Blog Topic: Advancements in Java Productivity
By Jim Revera
Lately I've been spending some time taking a look at Spring (www.springframework.org/). For those of you who are not familiar with it, Spring is a popular open source application framework that attempts to address many of the issues that make J2EE application development difficult. It provides a "lightweight container" that helps to simplify development, make testing easier, and encourages best practices to make applications more flexible and maintainable.

An interesting productivity study ( www.xebia.com/oth_publications_java_with_spring_just_as_productive_as_4gl.html) was recently performed at the 2005 Dutch RAD Race that concluded developers can be just as productive using Spring and Java as they can be with a 4GL RAD tool. This is very encouraging for the Java community, which has long struggled with developer productivity issues. What I really like about Spring is that it provides a nice, consistent architectural approach without masking the strengths of the underlying platform. For example, when deploying a Spring application on WebLogic Server, you still have access to WLS distributed transactions, clustering, high-speed messaging, legacy integration, advanced Web services, and advanced application management functionality... not to mention the inherent performance and scalability associated with WebLogic Server.

It's really very similar to what BEA pioneered with the WebLogic Workshop framework, now the core of Apache Beehive (http://incubator.apache.org/beehive/). Both frameworks have the same high-level goals of improving developer productivity on J2EE, both can be deployed on multiple platforms, and both leverage the dependency injection pattern to simplify application code (Martin Fowler has written a nice article that defines dependency injection). Of course, both frameworks have their own strengths and weaknesses upon closer examination.

In fact, if you look at the write-up from the Dutch RAD Race you'll see that the biggest issues they ran into during the competition were in developing the Web user interface... hmmmm, perhaps next time they should consider using Beehive PageFlows (http://incubator.apache.org/beehive/pageflow/getting_started.html) in the web tier. :)

Blog Topic: Books I'm Currently Reading
By Vinny Carpenter
As a recurring feature, I post a list of books that I am currently reading. I am a voracious book collector and (usually) reader as well. With a new baby who's fewer than two months old, reading time is at a premium, and so I've built up quite a backlog. Books I am currently reading include:

  • Expert One-on-One J2EE Development without EJB by Rod Johnson, Juergen Hoeller
  • Tiger: A Developer's Notebook By David Flanagan, Brett McLaughlin
  • Better, Faster, Lighter Java By Bruce A. Tate, Justin Gehtland
  • Programming Jakarta Struts, 2nd Edition by Chuck Cavaness
  • Enterprise Service Bus By Dave Chappell
  • Tapestry in Action by Howard M. Lewis Ship
Blog Topic: Strategies for WebLogic Domain Configuration
By Prakash Malani
I have created a fun, dynamic, and interactive presentation on various strategies for domain configuration based on two articles that I wrote for WLDJ. When I was contemplating such an article, I predicted that the article would be about 1,500 words. After all the research, investigations, and implementing the different strategies, I ended up with 10,000-word article!

Due to space and time constraints, I had to condense all the information down to two separate articles.

For the presentation, I boiled down all of the information into a few slides. The primary slides are just a few bullet points on the pros and cons of each different strategy. Before discussing the pros and cons, I presented a brief overview of concepts and terminology.

The presentation was very interactive with the attendees participating with questions and comments. The attendees asked good questions that directly pertained to the challenges facing them.

The presentation is available ( see *note below re: membership) here: http://groups.yahoo.com/group/bartssandbox/ files/WebLogicDomainConfigurationOptions.pdf. Many of the attendees wanted to play with the different strategies. The example I used in the article as well as the in the presentation is available here: http://groups.yahoo.com/group/bartssandbox/files/Automate_SEM.zip.

The example is very good because even though it is simple, it leverages many different types of resources such as JDBC connection pool, JDBC datasource, JMS connection factory, JMS store, JMS server, and JMS destination. The example also includes JUnit tests to verify that the domain is created and configured properly. I encourage you to download the example and take the different strategies for a test drive.

Before the presentation, I had created a poll on what you were using for domain configuration (http://groups.yahoo.com/group/LABEAUG/message/290). The poll results concur with my informal surveys that most of you are using WebLogic Console for domain configuration. Domain configuration with the console is manual, error-prone, tedious, and repetitive. Therefore, I encourage you to consider one of the automated solutions, such as WebLogic Server Scripting Tool (WLST), instead of manual configuration with WebLogic Console.

Drop me a note about what strategies you have been successful with as well as what challenges you have encountered.

*Note: Free membership to bartsandbox [www.bartssandbox.com/] is required to access the presentation, as well as the source code example.

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WLDJ News Desk trawls the world of e-commerce technologies for news and innovations and presents IT professionals with updates on WebLogic related technology trends, products, and services.

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