Chapter 1. Why "J2EE Without EJB"?

The traditional approach to J2EE architecture has often produced disappointing results: applications that are more complex than their business requirements warrant, show disappointing performance, are hard to test, and cost too much to develop and maintain.

It doesn't need to be so hard. There is a better way for most applications. In this book, we'll describe a simpler, yet powerful architectural approach, building on experience with J2EE and newer technologies such as Inversion of Control and AOP. Replacing EJB with lighter-weight, more flexible, infrastructure typically produces significant benefits. We and many others have used this approach in many production applications, with better results than are usually produced from traditional architectures.

Let's begin with a quick tour of the topics we'll examine in more detail in later chapters.

EJB Under the Spotlight

Like most of my colleagues, I was excited by the promise of EJB when it first appeared. I believed it was the way forward for enterprise middleware. However, I've since revised my opinions, in the light of my experiences and those of many colleagues.

Much has changed since the EJB specification was conceived:

  • Parts of the specification's design now seem dated. For example, dynamic proxies, introduced in J2SE 1.3, call into question the container code generation envisaged in the EJB specification and the multiple source files needed to implement every EJB.

  • The traditional link between EJB ...

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