IBM Updates WebSphere Portlet Factory
Published: January 13, 2009
by Alex Woodie
System i shops involved in Java-based Web portals may be interested to hear about the latest release of IBM's WebSphere Portlet Factory. Big Blue says the latest release, version 6.1.2, brings enhancements that will allow developers to get Web 2.0 applications up and running quicker than before.
WebSphere Portlet Factory is a Windows-based tool designed to simplify the development of J2EE portlet applications and eliminate the need for direct coding. The software runs on top of WebSphere Application Server versions 6 or 7, and supports all major operating systems--including i5/OS and IBM i OS.
With version 6.1.2, IBM has delivered several enhancements that it says speeds development and maintenance of portals, which is always a concern. One of those features is the capability to rapidly "re-brand" an entire Web portal with a centralized theme from one location.
Team development has also been improved thanks to new versioning capabilities and more advanced capability to identify and add files to source control repositories.
This release also introduces a library of pre-built connectors for exposing Representational State Transfer (REST) services from back-end systems. This will make it easier to assemble applications from reusable chunks of services--a key component of service oriented architecture (SOA).
Portlet Factory users can also now create and deploy "widgets" to IBM's Mashup Center, the new IBM framework for quickly developing, connecting, and deploying bunches of Web 2.0 apps in new and interesting combinations.
The new release also adds more development and deployment platforms. Developers can work with the Portlet Factory from within other IDEs, including Eclipse 3.4, Rational Application Developer and Rational Software Architect 7.5, or WebSphere Information Developer version 6.2. Deployment options include WebSphere Portal Server, WebSphere Portal Enable, WebSphere Portal Extend, WebSphere Portal Express, WebSphere Application Server, and the IBM Mashup Center.
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