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Introduction to Jaffa

JAFFA the open source web site

1.0 Motivation Statement

Many business are turning to the Java / J2EE framework for building Business Applications. Anyone that wants to go down the path of an open architecture, open platform approach is instantly more interested in the J2EE architecture than the 'Vendor Lock-in' solution that .NET offers.

The difficulty is crossing the gap between selecting the Java/J2EE platform, and having a complete integrated architecture on which to build your Business Solution.

JAFFA is aimed at Software development projects that want to focus their energy on building Business Functionality, without spending time on developing the underlying architecture.

The JAFFA Project intends to provide a real world application framework, and then build a community of developers around that, who all want an open standards based framework that they can invest in, for building their specific applications on.

1.1 Why a reference to the 'Aerospace Industry'?

Simple, that is the domain in which the founders of this architecture come from. We believe that the problem this project solves is far more widespread than just this industry.

1.2 Why another architecture, aren't there enough frameworks?

Yes, far too many. This is how we started. We looked at all the open source projects at the time and started piecing together a solution based on the ones that looked most promising. In the year we spent researching and building prototypes we focused our efforts arround the following projects

What JAFFA does on top of this is add Code Generators, Patterns, Processes, Standards and Conventions that allow Domain Object Model's to be brought to life with application business logic, wrapped in a transactional component based packages, which integrates via a middleware layer to the presentation layer. The presentation layer had been developed such that it can support the most sophisticated web portal type requirements, as well as providing a 'widget based' user interface for clean JSP's and rapid development for complex presentations.

It doesn't stop there; on top of this architecture there is a strong focus on productivity tools. This is critical to the success of building business applications. Applying J2EE architecture patterns is one step, but the next is building complete usable components, and then moving on to build groups of components to form the basis of a Business Pattern.

The vision of being able to model your business domain, turn it into real working persistent objects, and then rapidly build usable components on those object, would cut out a huge amount of time in the initial project stages. Then the real work would be solely focused on implementing the domain specific business logic and custom presentation aspects of the solution.

1.3 Why open source?

Businesses that build software solutions need architecture, they often buy it and then live with its constraints, and the constraints of the Vendor providing it. What business really want is a standards based, open framework, supported by a community of developers with similar business needs, that give them a zero risk, zero cost solution of adopting it. No development or run-time licensing fees, no limits on what they can and can't use it for, no limits on how they can adapt any part of the framework to suit their differing business needs.

They want to be buying into a framework that through its openness is supported by a community of developers with likeminded interests, which will be constantly supporting, testing, reviewing, extending, fixing this framework so it meets the needs of the business applications it must support.

1.4 Why the focus on Business Applications?

Business Applications tend to have a very strong emphasis on complex domain object models, data intensive transactions, and requirements for robust B2B interfaces. This is what the J2EE platform is design for, but the details of distributed transaction processing and management of persistent objects puts a huge burden on the development of these solutions. JAFFA attempts to make this simple, but without compromise.

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