Tuesday, October 6, 2020

Re: Why Don’t You Use Java for Programming the Client-Side Web Apps on Web Browser?

We primarily use GWT in combination with Jackson/Jersey and Tomcat here where I work.

We have one front-end and one back-end guy (me).

Early on we were using JS on the client side, but, as soon as we started trying to do anything complex in JS we rapidly found ourselves constantly refactoring code to keep things working - and kept missing things because of the hyper nested callback nature of the mess.

We tested out GWT and immediately switched to it. The UI semantics were just *better* than what the JS libs were offering at the time, and not having to fight function closure, scope, correct typing, etc, on a constant basis was a major boost to our productivity.

The fact we can generally use POJOs shared between the client and server is also a major bonus.

At one time we even considered going to Vaadin, but then they dropped GWT, so really haven't looked at their product in a while.

If TeaVM was easy to setup via Gradle/Buildship/Eclipse, we might look at that as an additional tool to add - but last I checked it looked like a PITA. We don't use Maven as we have many many many loosely coupled projects - that we need to edit simultaneously - that don't share parent projects and Maven insists we can't configure things in such a fashion.


On 10/6/20 5:21 AM, David Nouls wrote:
Hi Lofi,

In my company we are the only group that is working with GWT to develop a new customer facing application. We have a few products in maintenance mode that are also using GWT. But most new developments are using Angular.

The biggest problems we are facing with using GWT/Java for the client are:
- Lack of developers with GUI and GWT skills
- Lack of developers who are even willing to learn GWT.  GWT is seen as a dead technology after Google pushed it out.
- Management does not like us to keep on using GWT for the same reason.

I managed to convince management to use GWT for our product because we have a long history of using GWT and we had experience before with the maintenance burdens of using JavaScript in the past. And we can deliver GUI changes quite quickly (in many cases much faster than the teams using Angular).

But we do have a big problem finding GWT developers or finding people who want to learn it. And that is a very big risk for a project.

I know that there is active development going on in GWT and J2CL but, you barely see blog posts about GWT or libraries being released for it.
The gwtproject page is mostly stale, the documentation is mostly about old API's. The more advanced features takes some time to find and learn.

If you compare that with the constant release cycle and amount of info/noise I see related to Angular and other Frameworks then it is understandable that people have the impression that GWT is dead.

On Thursday, September 24, 2020 at 9:02:18 PM UTC+2 lofid...@gmail.com wrote:
I would like to know, what are the obstacles for you as Java developers not using Java as programming language for writing Web browser apps. Web browser apps are client-side and not server-side Web apps. 
I would like to know from you... Java developers...

Thanks, Lofi

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