Errai: The browser as a platform

Friday, August 5, 2011

Errai 1.3 Beta is Here!

About four months of hardcore, heads down work, I am pleased to announce the first official beta release of Errai 1.3. Don’t be dissuaded by the relatively small increment to the version number -- this is a big release!

The number one philosophy of Errai is to erase boilerplate and bring the power of server-side programming to the browser. In 1.3, we’ve made great strides in this area.

The Enterprise

First and foremost, much of our efforts have been focused on our Errai enterprise integration around Java EE6 technologies. We wanted more than just dependency-injection in the browser, we wanted the full power of CDI in the browser. And while we still fall short of 100% of the CDI specification being implemented, we have managed to implement a significant footprint of the specification.

A big priority for 1.3 was making the CDI integration even more invisible. So, if you’re going to do CDI in the browser, than it should be against the standard APIs. So, gone if the old client Event interface, and in is use of the javax.enterprise.event.Event interface for CDI events.

Qualifiers for events and injection are now fully supported in Errai client code. And even for server-client events, in both directions!

We also now have support for CDI Producers and private-method PostConstructs.

The Framework

Implementing the aforementioned requires a lot of framework infrastructure. So we went back to the drawing board and revisited the way in which Errai generates code. And in so doing, we implemented a brand new class meta model, which completely abstracts away the GWT generator API, and we then implemented our core IOC engine on top of it. The end result is all the ridiculously awesome stuff we’re doing with CDI!

This new code generation framework, forms the basis for how we foresee going forward and implementing integration for more of the EE6 stack, as well as other great technologies like Infinispan, for instance.

Our latest team member to join, Christian Sadilek, has put a lot of effort into developing our test harness and getting our test coverage up to a respectable level, and I think that will pay dividends in the quality of this release as well as future releases.

The Docs

We are renovating our documentation. And we’ve already done a lot. But there’s more to do. For the latest docs -- which we’ll be updating frequently in the coming weeks -- please check out or Confluence Wiki here.

The Archetype

To get started with Errai SE, you can run this command right now:

mvn archetype:generate \
-DarchetypeGroupId=org.jboss.errai.archetypes \
-DarchetypeArtifactId=bus-quickstart \
-DarchetypeVersion=1.3.0-SNAPSHOT \

To get started with Errai EE, you can run this command right now:

mvn archetype:generate \
-DarchetypeGroupId=org.jboss.errai.archetypes \
-DarchetypeArtifactId=cdi-quickstart \
-DarchetypeVersion=1.3.0-SNAPSHOT \

The Downloads

If you’re allergic to Maven, our downloads page is here:

Also, expect an awesome Forge plugin to be on the horizon -- especially considering that I co-founded that project (I know, I know… it’s embarrassing that i don’t have a plugin yet. But i’m a busy guy!)

The Future

We are only at the beginning. We expect to add a third team member in the next few weeks, and we are working closely with other JBoss projects, like Seam and RichFaces to expand the reach of the benefits which we bring to the JBoss web technology ecosystem.

Since we’re a framework which looks so heavily to the power of the browser, you can expect that over the next few months, our focus will shift intensely to leveraging the scope of capabilities that HTML5 brings to the table for developing rich applications.

Our ideas are vast, and we hope to share them with you going forward. So stay tuned.

The Gratitude

Thank you for everyone in the community who has given us feedback, reported bugs and supported us. Thanks to Heiko Braun for helping to get this project off the ground, and we’ll miss him as he moves on to work on other things. Thanks to Christian Sadilek for coming out of left-field and being incredibly awesome in every way. Thanks to Rodney Russ for being the world’s awesomest manager. Thanks to Mark Little for supporting all this from day one. Thanks to Dan Allen for his evangelization. Thanks to Pete Muir for his support. Thanks to Lincoln Baxter, Jay Balunas, and Shane Bryzak! And thanks to you for reading this.


  1. Thanks Mike! You guys make advocating the technology easy. I really look forward to getting some cool demos together and really showing what this thing can do for developer happiness!

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