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Current state of GWT development

 
Hussein Baghdadi
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Hey Federico,
Two years ago I decided to implement a project asked by my unit in GWT (when it was 1.4) and it was one of the worst decision I have ever made.
UI in built in code, CSS in code, layout is in code.
Simply I lost the experience of our designer not to mention if I made one single change to the UI, I had to recompile the project.
Unit tests aren't always supposed to run due the possible time out errors.
Compilation is so slow.
Hard to run GWT hosted mode on external container.
Hibernate integration was a dark and painful nightmare.
Hard (at least to me) to write new components but to be fair here, it was always hard to write new components not matter which framework I use, whether it is JSF, GWT or Wicket.
Maybe it is just me...
To summarize, it was really bad decision.
What about GWT 2?
Do you suggest to give it a second chance?
 
Federico Kereki
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Hi!

Let me go over your points one by one:

John Todd wrote:Hey Federico,
UI in built in code, CSS in code, layout is in code.
Simply I lost the experience of our designer not to mention if I made one single change to the UI, I had to recompile the project.


Today you could use UIBinder and define the interface (UI, CSS, layout) in XML but you'll still have to compile it.

John Todd wrote:Hey Federico,
Unit tests aren't always supposed to run due the possible time out errors.


MVP allows for faster tests. You end up using JUnit for (very fast) functional tests, GWTTestCase (not so fast) integration tests, and Selenium (slow) for acceptance tests. (I'd suggest Chapter 13 in my book.)

John Todd wrote:Hey Federico,
Compilation is so slow.


You can twiddle parameters so, when in development, only ONE version of the code will get built.

John Todd wrote:
Hard to run GWT hosted mode on external container.


Sorry, didn't get this. What case are you thinking about?

John Todd wrote:Hibernate integration was a dark and painful nightmare.


I've used Hibernate, but as it is a server-side-only technique, I had no particular problems because of GWT.

John Todd wrote:Hard (at least to me) to write new components but to be fair here, it was always hard to write new components not matter which framework I use, whether it is JSF, GWT or Wicket.


I have developed my own components, which work in MVP fashion, and included them in my (also MVP) forms. It's far better if you can build up your widget out of existing ones, rather than try to do the whole job in JavaScript... and in that case you'll have to deal with browsers' quirks on your own! (I'd recommend chapters 5 and 15 in ESSENTIAL GWT.)

John Todd wrote:What about GWT 2?
Do you suggest to give it a second chance?


Obviously I may be biased, but I'm still working with (and happy with!) GWT, and where I work, we do all the client-side development... so, yes, I'd give it a chance!





 
salvin francis
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I would like to point out, Even in GWT 1.4 :

John Todd wrote:
UI in built in code

Thats true for any technology (such as Swing) that allows you to design UI.
By the way, are you aware that you can design your page in HTML and add place holders for GWT content in your html page (e.g. RootPanel.get("someId"))?


John Todd wrote:
CSS in code

other than specifying CSS class name, its not mandatory to specify any css related content.
There may be exceptions where for example you are fading the color of an object to another color / changing the font.

John Todd wrote:
layout is in code.

same as the Swing point

John Todd wrote:
I made one single change to the UI, I had to recompile the project.

You need to only refresh the browser. The recompilation will be required only if you are deploying the project to the client.

John Todd wrote:
Hard (at least to me) to write new components but to be fair here, it was always hard to write new components not matter which framework I use


Personally i find GWT to be very flexible to writing new components (My site has its own species of components !!).
all you need to do is :

 
Consider Paul's rocket mass heater.
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