Appendix B. Spring and Java EE
Current users of Java EE may have specific questions about how the Spring framework is different from the implementations that they are already using in their day-to-day business application development. On the surface, there appear to be differences in architecture, design, and philosophy between Java EE and the Spring framework. As a matter of fact, the entire idea behind the Spring framework came from Rod Johnson and Juergen Holler's desire to prove that there is a better approach to enterprise Java application development.
The initial differences have diminished over time, mainly because the core audience for both technologies is essentially the same. The needs and feature requirements for the enterprise developer are the same and both technology streams must satisfy these requirements. The evolution of Java EE from the venerable workhorse J2EE 1.4 with EJB 2.1 to today's Java EE 5 with EJB 3.0 has brought the Java EE environment closer to that provided by the Spring framework. On the flip side, the user demand for robust persistence and transaction support has driven the Spring framework to support and embrace key Java EE 5 technologies such as the Java Persistence API.
As both frameworks evolve together into the future, they will likely continue to complement one another, rather than compete. System architects and web applications developers will continue to be the best judges of the most appropriate combination of technology for their individual ...