Portlet Factory Shortens Development Learning Curve

By Jim Rapoza  |  Posted 2004-05-24 Print this article Print

The development tool, which runs inside WebSphere Studio or Eclipse, makes it easy to build standards-based portal applications.

The rise of JavaServer technology, XML and Web services, all of which have been adopted by major portal vendors, has made it easier to move portlets among portals.

But developing in portals can still be a problem, especially with standard tool sets. Many portals have excellent development environments, but these can be hard for some developers to learn.

Bowstreet has worked to address this problem with its Portlet Factory 5.8, which provides easy-to-learn uniform development tools for creating portlets. Version 5.8, released in March, can work with any portal that supports Java Specification Request 168, a portlet spec for standardized design and development.

This means Portlet Factory 5.8 will work with any portal that supports JSR 168—currently, several from top portal vendors—and should probably encompass most of them in the near future.

The tool runs inside the WebSphere Studio or the Eclipse development environment. In my tests, it proved helpful for creating and editing complex portlets, which I could then easily deploy to my portals. However, experienced developers comfortable in their environments may not find it necessary, especially given the price, which starts at $6,000 per developer seat.

Those wishing to find out if Portlet Factory 5.8 is worth the cost in their portal development can download a 60-day evaluation at www.bowstreet.com.

Check out eWEEK.coms Developer & Web Services Center at http://developer.eweek.com for the latest news, reviews and analysis in programming environments and developer tools.

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Jim Rapoza, Chief Technology Analyst, eWEEK.For nearly fifteen years, Jim Rapoza has evaluated products and technologies in almost every technology category for eWEEK. Mr Rapoza's current technology focus is on all categories of emerging information technology though he continues to focus on core technology areas that include: content management systems, portal applications, Web publishing tools and security. Mr. Rapoza has coordinated several evaluations at enterprise organizations, including USA Today and The Prudential, to measure the capability of products and services under real-world conditions and against real-world criteria. Jim Rapoza's award-winning weekly column, Tech Directions, delves into all areas of technologies and the challenges of managing and deploying technology today.

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