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Mar 16

Struts is “good enough”?

Java, Tech, Web Frameworks Add comments

Dan Moore has responded to Kris Thompson’s assertion that “Struts will continue to lose industry acceptance as the MVC leader in the J2EE space”.

I definitely see a trend to avoid Struts… it is coming from a few angles:

  • People getting frustrated: There are some quirks to Struts, and they get frustrating enough to make you want to try something else. It may not be the right thing to do in the short term, but it could arguably be the right thing in the long run
  • People getting bored: Hey, you keep hearing about Tapestry, WebWork, JSF, etc…. and you want to play with the new cool shiny toy. Building web apps themselves aren’t the most fun in the world, so I can see why some people want to try something new
  • People want TLA’s for their resume: Nah… never met any of those
  • People not wanting to get left behind: A lot of the old Struts crew have moved on to other things…. and people don’t want to be left with the legacy

Now on the flip side there are many people like Dan, who don’t (or don’t think) they have the time to engage in something new, when Struts “works good enough”. There is nothing wrong with this, as you can write solid webapps in Struts just as you can in anything else… the business logic is where it matters.

What will it take for the Dan’s of the world to flip?

  • Someone needs to show him that moving to The New Way ™ will save him significant time (more than just saying so on a blog like this)
  • Maybe there isn’t a New Way that can even do this yet…. and we are waiting for a bigger leap in the web tier

I think it will be an interesting year for web frameworks, and look forward to see what comes of Tapestry and JSF (since they are very different).

The coupling of: MVC layer -> IoC -> Transparent persistence is a sexy one (e.g. Tapestry -> Spring -> Hibernate).

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