Eclipse Foundation on Jakarta EE’s Cloud Native Java Future
In this interview with the Executive Director of the Eclipse Foundation, it was revealed that we can expect the Jakarta EE platform to evolve more rapidly.
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Earlier this Spring, Oracle and other major vendors announced some of the early plans for Jakarta EE (formerly known as Java EE) in its new home with Eclipse Foundation. And, a survey of nearly 2,000 Java developers revealed that “Cloud Native” capabilities were the top requirement for the platform’s evolution. For our series focused on cloud trends for developers, DZone caught up with Mike MIlinkovich, Executive Director at Eclipse Foundation, to learn more about what the cloud-native future holds for Jakarta EE.
DZone: Taking the reins on the run-time for 10M Java developers is a pretty huge undertaking. What does that mean for Eclipse Foundation?
MM: This is about reinvigorating this technology — its APIs and spurring the next 20 years of relevance for Java as a major computing platform.
It's about solving large-scale, mission-critical, business problems with technology. And, that's something that Java has done very, very well for the last 20 years. And, this is all about enabling the next 20 years of success for this language and platform.
DZone: What are the growth areas that developers want to see in Jakarta EE, and particularly around cloud?
MM: Java developers have emphasized that they want to see more Jakarta EE support for microservices and native integration with Kubernetes. And, they want to see the overall pace of innovation pick up with Jakarta EE, particularly in cloud-native directions.
If you look at the Jakarta EE marketplace today, you know, on the plus side you have enormous large-scale deployments running mission-critical applications. And there are literally millions of developers that have skills in this technology and as well as build infrastructure that is JVM based. So there's a lot of install base here both in terms of application footprint, and human resources as well. But there are some well-understood limitations with both Java and Jakarta EE with cloud-native requirements, including things like how the platform handles streaming data, functional programming, and the sort of modern elasticity and deployment requirements that the cloud demands. As Java EE, the platform lost touch with some of these key requirements, and those types of areas are where we’re going to reinvigorate the platform as Jakarta EE.
DZone: How does Eclipse plan to drive that cloud-native innovation for Jakarta EE?
MM: Our goal with Jakarta EE is to modernize the ecosystem by replacing the JCP and creating a new open spec process. We’re moving away from the single vendor-led governance structure that we had with Oracle and the JCP -- and now it’s completely vendor neutral. We’re making sure that we as a community and as a collection of open source projects are open, and making it much easier for developers and contributors to participate.
The first step in creating this process was to establish the Jakarta EE Working Group, which will be the governing body for this community moving forward. This was completed back in March, and the various committees are hard at work.
We're also going to get rid of the notion of a single reference implementation and have multiple compatible implementations. It'll be a self-certification process, and there will be branding for compatible implementations of profiles and platforms. So this is going to be a big change in how specs and how this platform evolves.
Under this new governance model, we expect the Jakarta EE platform to evolve rapidly, incorporating Java innovations from open source communities like Eclipse MicroProfile into new versions of the platform to help developers create portable cloud-native applications.
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