Sun Microsystems' Project Rave development tool, which targets corporate developers who need to build database-centric, web-based applications quickly, makes its debut at the JavaOne conference this week.
An early access version of the tool is expected to be made available in the autumn, with the tool to ship by the middle of next year.
Rich Green, Sun's vice president of developer platforms, said Project Rave tool will enable developers to build applications that can be deployed on an any standards-based Java application server, and that the web-based applications produced with the tool can be enhanced into an enterprise-class application at any time by using other tools.
Green said key technologies that paved the way for the creation of Project Rave were the Java XML technologies, known as JAX, that are used to build web services, Java Database Connectivity row sets that allow higher level interactions with SQL databases, and JavaServer Faces technology which developers can use to build user-interface components.
Using JavaServer Faces, developers can connect the user-interface components to an application data source and wire client-generated events to server-side event handlers, Sun said.
Meta Group analyst Thomas Murphy said there was "nothing unique" about took, adding that database-oriented web applications that can run on any standards-based Java application server can be built with tools from Borland, Oracle and Macromedia.
Murphy said the Sun tool was running "a little behind". "If they would have had it a year ago when .net first came out, I think it would have been more interesting. But by time they're able to put it in production, Microsoft will be almost on the third release of .net."
The Sun JavaOne conference opens tomorrow and runs until Friday.
Carol Sliwa writes for Computerworld