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plug-in technology for site sub-applications?

 
James Collings
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Cross-posted on StackOverflow which will likely get me a -1 which nearly anything short of "How do I do this to a String" will get you on StackExchange these days. :-/

This is a general architectural / approach question which likely only someone who writes Java would know the answer to. Consequently, I am unsure if it belongs here on StackOverflow or if it belongs somewhere else in the StackExchange family of sites. Please advise.

Lately I've seen several Java based websites / applications which use a plug-in technology such that the site itself has sub-applications. As a developer, I find this fascinating and would like to give it a whirl. Problem is that these don't seem to be portlet apps and I think I would have recognized portlets, having worked on those before. Implementations I'm interested in include Rally and several of Atlassian's offerings. This style is what I am interested in. Please do not post closed source information. I'm really just looking for research points on latest-greatest tech since it's been so hard to sort through the all the noise coming back from Google. Sometimes with Google you need to get the right incantation and "Abracadabra" doesn't seem to be cutting it.
 
Bear Bibeault
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Without specific examples it's hard to speculate, but what leads you to believe that these are Java-based applications?
 
James Collings
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Bear Bibeault wrote:Without specific examples it's hard to speculate, but what leads you to believe that these are Java-based applications?


JSP style naming conventions mostly.
 
Bear Bibeault
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Again, just guessing -- but Java could be used to provide initial dynamic pages views, but in modern systems it is most likely that the "sub applications" you are seeing are JavaScript powered. Again, just a guess as there's not much else to do.
 
James Collings
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Bear Bibeault wrote:Again, just guessing -- but Java could be used to provide initial dynamic pages views, but in modern systems it is most likely that the "sub applications" you are seeing are JavaScript powered. Again, just a guess as there's not much else to do.


OK that would mean that we are seeing a proliferation of app specific web plug-in tech. IMHO that is a good thing as I hated portlet tech... or at least I hated LifeRay specifically. Have high hopes that Jigsaw / OSGI will help. I mean in theory, you could develop such a tech if used a module system.
 
Bear Bibeault
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James Collings wrote:OK that would mean that we are seeing a proliferation of app specific web plug-in tech.

No. JavaScript is native to the browsers. Plug-ins are also a concept whose time is passed.

IMHO that is a good thing as I hated portlet tech

The whole concept of creating dynamic UI on the server to send to the client is rather passé. It was necessary when the browsers didn't have much power or capabilities, but that's in the past.
 
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