Oracle survey: Java EE users want REST, HTTP/2

The respondents were also keen on Oauth and OpenID, eventing, and JSON-B

In September and October, Oracle asked Java users to rank future Java EE enhancements by importance. The survey's 1700 participants put REST services and HTTP/2 as top priorities, followed by Oauth and OpenID, eventing, and JSON-B (Java API for JSON Binding).

"REST (JAX-RS 2.1) and HTTP/2 (Servlet 4.0) have been voted as the two most important technologies surveyed, and together with JSON-B represent three of the top six technologies," a report on the survey concludes. "Much of the new API work in these technologies for Java EE 8 is already complete. There is significant value in delivering Java EE 8 with these technologies, and the related JSON-P (JSON with Padding) updates, as soon as possible."

Oracle is pursuing Java EE 8 as a retooled version of the platform geared to cloud and microservices deployments. It's due in late-2017, and a follow-up release, Java EE 9, is set to appear a year later.

Based on the survey, Oracle considered accelerating Java EE standards for OAuth and OpenID Connect. "This could not be accomplished in the Java EE 8 timeframe, but we'll continue to pursue Security 1.0 for Java EE 8," the company said. But two other technologies that ranked high in the survey, configuration and health-checking, will be postponed. "We have concluded it is best to defer inclusion of these technologies in Java EE in order to complete Java EE 8 as soon as possible."

Management, JMS (Java Message Service), and MVC ranked low, thus supporting Oracle's plans to withdraw new APIs for these areas from Java EE 8. While, CDI (Contexts and Dependency Injection) 2.0, Bean Validation 2.0, and JSF (JavaServer Faces) 2.3 were not directly surveyed, Oracle has made significant progress on them and will include them in Java EE 8.

JAX-RS (Java API for RESTful Web Services) drew a lot of support for use with cloud and microservices applications, with 1,171 respondents rating it as very important. "The current practice of cloud development in Java is largely based on REST and asynchrony," the report said. "For Java developers, that means using the standard JAX-RS API. Suggested enhancements coming to the next version of JAX-RS include: a reactive client API, non-blocking I/O support, server-sent events and better CDI integration." HTTP/2, a protocol for more efficient use of network resources and reduced latency, was rated very important by 1,037 respondents when it comes to cloud and microservices applications.

Respondents also supported the reactive style of programming for the next generation of cloud and microservices, with 647 calling it very important, and eventing, for cloud and microservices applications, was favored by 769 respondents. "Many cloud applications are moving from a synchronous invocation model to an asynchronous event-driven model," Oracle said. "Key Java EE APIs could support this model for interacting with cloud services. A common eventing system would simplify the implementation of such services."

In other findings, eventual consistency for cloud and microservices applications was favored by 514 respondents who found it very important and 468 who found it important. Multi-tenancy, critical to cloud deployments, was rated very important by 377 respondents and important by 390 survey takers. JSON-P was rated as very important by 576 respondents, while 781 gave this same rating to JSON-B. Standardizing NoSQL database support for cloud and microservices applications was rated very important by 489 respondents and important by 373 of those surveyed, and  582 respondents thought it was very important that Java EE 9 investigate the modularization of EE containers.

The greatest number of the survey's respondents -- more than 700 -- had more than eight years' experiences developing with Java EE, while 680 had from two to eight years of experience.

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