Interesting post last week from James Governor of RedMonk with an eye-catching headline: “Web Drives Strong Demand for Java Skills.”
Anyone who’s followed eXo knows that we’ve always been bullish on Java in the enterprise. In fact, we are leveraging web technologies to make Java systems even better. Yes, the web has passed Java by with more richness, interactivity, and a much better user experience. But Java is still a robust enterprise ecosystem with billions of dollars invested. It’s still a place for innovation. Our question to Java enterprises is simple: Why throw it all out?
A while ago, we were talking to some analysts about an inquiry they’d received from a client: A very large Java shop wanted to do something with their Java apps — make them more modern, refresh them, add document management, collaboration capabilities. The advice they were given: Try SharePoint.
Not practical, to say the least.
This is a pain point we’ve seen time and again with our customers over the years. While the Java middleware leaders totally focused on scalability and efficiency of controlled, self-hosted relational database applications, they’ve missed the boat on many things: user experience, content as data, social features, more personal control.
We’ve been talking about eXo Platform 3.0 for a while now. It isn’t an “open source SharePoint,” like others have claimed (either for themselves or for us). It’s a portal (a word that seems to be taboo these days but Java developers know what we mean) and much much more. It’s Java’s own SharePoint. It’s about reusability of Java components; mixing and matching of relational data and content; publishing, sharing, and collaborating on data and content across many places — website, intranets, enterprise social networks.
We’ve been showing off some of these capabilities over the last few months:
- Add social features to a Grails application
- Mashup activity streams for JIRA, Sonar, and Hudson
- Build mashups
- Integrate a portal server with Zoho
Java’s about to be supercharged. And the Java developer’s life is about to get much easier.