Will Java EE ever make it to the cloud?

Last week's Google I/O conference had pretty big news for Java developers: the release of a paid, souped-up Google App Engine for Java offering, in partnership with VMware, with support for the Spring Framework and an SLA promising 99.9 percent uptime. It's the sort of offering designed to expand the market for Google's cloud service beyond tinkerers and Web startups, and convince people in big organizations (with corresponding big budgets) that they should try the offering out. Will it work?

There's a pretty interesting pair of pieces on InfoWorld that, perhaps without meaning to, offer a point-counterpoint on the subject. Neil McAllister is bullish; he sees this is a clever move on the part of VMware, which is using Java to move to cloud computing, which is the next step of the virtualization that is its bread and butter. He thinks that Spring support will make up for the lack of Java EE support -- the latter framework, as he explains, is too heavyweight to be virtualized onto a cloud system. But Savio Rodrigues thinks that lack of Java EE support is a killer; this feeds into his previously stated suspicions of Spring, which are focused on the fact that it's ultimately controlled by EMC rather than being an open standard like Java EE.

The lack of a serious Java EE cloud option is in fact glaring; whether it's from lack of effort -- as McAllister points out, Larry Ellison is a notorious cloud skeptic -- or simply because Java EE is simply too large and unwieldy a mass to run in a distributed cloud environment is open to question. One would think that the Web profile, at least, might make a candidate? The question is: will the high-end Java standard ever make the jump to the cloud? And, if not, will this lead to more fragmentation?

This story, "Will Java EE ever make it to the cloud?" was originally published by JavaWorld.

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