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So many alternatives. What are the problems with JSP?

 
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Hi all,
This article is giving a landscape of all alternatives of JSP. So many alternatives! Barracuda, Turbine, Freemaker, WebMacro, Velocity, CoCoon, XMLC .... I am about what are the problems with JSP?
Does anyone have experience of these alternatives and do some comparison among them?
Among these and JSP with Taglib and Struts, which is your favorite?
 
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Hi Doug,
I'm just starting to take a look at Struts. It seems really good at the moment. WebWork is another one that I wanted to look at, but the documentation on it isn't the greatest. I really don't have the time at the moment to look into it at that depth, but from what I hear, its really good.
Frameworks like Struts and WebWork make developing Model 2 applications easy as it does a lot of the redundant stuff for you. Making your own framework takes time.
Turbine looks like it offers a lot of features, but it would take a lot of time and playing around to figure it all out. Sometime in the future I'll look at that one.
I don't care too much for the Templating frameworks. I really don't like any code at all in the presentation pages. I work in a shop that has designers creating the presentation pages and they don't know anything about programming, just html. So if I can give them a tag library, and show them how to use it, they'll love it. That's what I like about Struts, and WebWork is supposedly the same, but its tag libraries aren't as complex.
I believe people's biggest complaint about JSP (as is mine), is that it's far too easy to put code in the page. This is fine for small applications with only a couple of pages or so. But with large applications, everything is tightly coupled with this approach. Making one little change could result in massive changes to a number of pages. This is what the framework try to take care of. Creating helper class (basically beans as the model) and have the presentation pages call them for the info. Make changes here is easy as you only change the model class.
That's my two cents,
/rick
[ March 12, 2002: Message edited by: rick salsa ]
 
Doug Wang
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rick,
Thanks for sharing with me your experience. So what is your strategy of building tag libraries?
And I will keep one eye open on this thread.
[ March 13, 2002: Message edited by: Doug Wang ]
 
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i think the jrun tag library is a good one for study!
 
Rick Salsa
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Hi Doug,
Sorry to take so long to get back to you. We're using the tag libraries to just pull out values. There is NO presentation code (xhtml) in the tag libraries anywhere. They are strictly being used to perform business logic. The presentation pages (JSP) perform all the presentation formatting, like tables, css, etc.
I'd recommend not putting any html in your tag libraries if possible. It just keeps the separation of logic from content in tact. That way, there is no need to change the tag libraries if the css class name changes for something that is contained in your library.
I hope that made sense. I then to run off sometimes.
/rick
 
Doug Wang
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Hi rick,
Huge thanks for your response. Your advice is really helpful. I do like many of your posts.
[ March 13, 2002: Message edited by: Doug Wang ]
 
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Rick:
I'd have to disagree with your view on not putting any HTML in custom tags. I have used HTML-generating tags to do simple things such as generating a select list dynamically or creating JavaScript on the fly.
Granted, the examples I mentioned don't deal with business logic, only presentation. There's certainly nothing wrong with HTML custom tags as long as the developers separate them from the logic tags.
-Nick
 
Doug Wang
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Yiming, nice to see you here. Keep up posting. Follow the instructions, you will find your recent posts.
Nick, thanks for your inputs.
 
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I would agree with Nick. A custom tag library that ONLY provides presentation helpers is a good idea. In fact, logic should be completely separated away from the JSP anyway. If you are using a Model 2 architecture, the business logic has all been invoked by the time the JSP gets control.
 
Rick Salsa
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Originally posted by Nick Heudecker:

I'd have to disagree with your view on not putting any HTML in custom tags. I have used HTML-generating tags to do simple things such as generating a select list dynamically or creating JavaScript on the fly.


I'd agree with you on that one, but you could also use an iterator tag and still accomplish the same results. For something like you mentioned, I'd have no problem with doing. What I meant was creating tables to display results, etc. I work for a (mostly) communications company, and the lead designer, is constantly changing his mind on the design and display of the output. That meant I had to go into my tag library each time and make a bunch of changes. Thank goodness for Iterator tags. It makes my life much easier now.
But I do agree with, on things like making drop-down selects, etc., doing it in a tag-lib is fine.
But for me, I rather not see much, any if I could in my tag-libs, but that's just me.

Originally posted by Doug Wang:

Huge thanks for your response. Your advice is really helpful. I do like many of your posts.


No problem, I try to help out as much as I can
/rick
 
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