Oracle has announced the availability of Oracle JDeveloper 11g Release 2. Part of Oracle Fusion Middleware 11g, Oracle JDeveloper is a free, full-featured IDE. "It's a very broad and very productive environment targeted toward Oracle developers in the Java environment," says Bill Pataky, vice president of product management, Oracle. The new release enhances the overall development experience by delivering an improved IDE, including support for new technologies and standards, as well as updates to Oracle Application Development Framework (ADF) 11g.
In addition to performance and usability improvements for Oracle JDeveloper 11g Release 2, updates to Oracle ADF 11g further simplify the development experience.
Within JDeveloper, as well as the framework, there is support for new JavaServer Faces 2.0 and Facelets standards; and within ADF, there are about 170 new JavaServer Faces Rich Client Components.
There have also been infrastructure changes to the IDE to facilitate OSGi tooling. "Every IDE has now moved to a much more modular environment where you can extend the IDE using plug-ins but what you see now is that with the OSGi initiative, there is a common framework for the tooling. It doesn't make the plug-ins interchangeable but you have a common paradigm and as a result we were able to get tremendous gains in our IDE performance and start-up time." Start-up times have been reduced by 2x to 3x which is "quite a dramatic improvement," Pataky says.
Another area of investment is the ability to hot deploy ADF applications and components into an existing environment, without interruption.
There is also support for a new ADF Faces skin editor which makes user interface customization simpler with a visual CSS editor. Previously, users had to be an expert in CSS and CSS architecture and do manual coding to change the skinning of an application, explains Pataky.
In addition, there is improved support for emerging technologies, including RESTful Web Services, simplifying use of REST services as data sources in Oracle ADF.
And, within the area of ALM support, there are two significant advancements, Bill notes. There is support for Hudson, and extended support for Maven. "We had some preliminary support in there but it is vastly expanded and much more robust in this release," says Pataky. That is part of Oracle's server side elements to the JDeveloper IDE, which is referred to as the Team Productivity Center, or TPC. TPC serves as an integration hub for all the ALM components and is where everything comes together on the server side to present the artifacts that are relevant to the developers inside their IDE without them having to leave their native environment.
In total, this release of JDeveloper represents a significant improvement in ease of use. "Java developers will immediately notice the difference," says Pataky.
"The fact is that developers can never have a fast enough IDE, and no matter how fast you make it, they always want it faster," adds Duncan Mills, senior director of product management, Oracle. Just purely from the point of view of developer experience, in their day-to-day jobs, Mills says, the improved modularity and speed of start-up is going to be a "huge advantage," as are the hot-deploy features. "We have also had a lot of customers champing at the bit for JavaServer Faces 2.0. That is a very enthusiastically awaited technology."