TweetFollow Us on Twitter

Jan 00 Online

Volume Number: 16 (2000)
Issue Number: 1
Column Tag: MacTech Online

MacTech Online

by Jeff Clites <online@mactech.com>

For reasons known only to Apple itself, the Powers that Be have decided not to market WebObjects aggressively, at least for the present. The problem this poses for would-be implementers, of course, is that it makes WebObjects a tough sell in corporate environments, where IT managers may simply not have heard of it. This, combined with the anti-Apple sentiment which is common in Windows- and Unix-centered companies, makes it an uphill battle for consultants and programmers to convince the decision-makers that WebObjects is the best tool for the job at hand. While a few well-placed print ads would go a long way toward making this process easier, for the time being we must fend for ourselves as WebObjects advocates. The good news is that there are a growing number of articles and reports on the internet which give honest evaluations of WebObjects and its place among the competition, and these help lend some credibility to arguments in favor of WebObjects. It's refreshing to see even this limited amount of coverage in the mainstream press, even though the reviews aren't always positive. For instance, check out the articles by PCWeek and CNET, and be sure to read the Stepwise response to an earlier PCWeek review. (The review itself seems to be gone from PCWeek's servers.)

CNET.com - WebObjects: Apple's best-kept secret?
http://news.cnet.com/news/0-1003-200-344957.html?st.ne.fd.gif.j
ZDNet: PC Week: 8 Web App Servers That Deliver
http://www.zdnet.com/pcweek/stories/news/0,4153,409380,00.html
What's wrong with the PCWeek Application Server shoot-out?
http://www.stepwise.com/Articles/Editorial/AppServerShootout.html

One of the first questions someone will ask when they hear about WebObjects is, "Who's using it?". Apple has a huge list of corporate customers on their web site, as well as in-depth articles on how WebObjects is being used by AAA, Consumers Digest, and GE Capital, and Stepwise has an article on its use at the L.A. Times (and links to several other users in the above-mentioned PCWeek rebuttal article). Also, the Fall 1999 issue of the Apple University Arts online magazine has several stories of WebObjects deployment in university and educational settings. Finally, MacCentral has a brief article which reiterates just how many big-name customers are using WebObjects. It's too bad that this comes as a surprise even to Apple supporters.

WebObjects Customers
http://www.apple.com/webobjects/customers.html
AAA
http://www.apple.com/webobjects/customers/aaa.html
Consumers Digest
http://www.apple.com/webobjects/customers/consumersdigest.html
GE Capital
http://www.apple.com/webobjects/customers/gecapital.html
The L.A. Times introduces a WebObjects-based NBA basketball stats app
http://www.stepwise.com/Articles/News/OOPDreams.html
Apple University Arts, Fall 1999
http://www.apple.com/education/hed/aua0202/
They like WebObjects 4, they really like it
http://www.maccentral.com/news/9903/03.webobjects.shtml

After you've impressed potential detractors with all of the important users of WebObjects, impress them with all of the honors it has received recently, including awards from the Java Developer's Journal, New Media Magazine, and Network Computing.

Industry Awards for WebObjects
http://www.apple.com/webobjects/reaction.html
New Media Feature: The Next Big Thing
http://newmedia.com/NewMedia/99/02/feature/web.html
1999 Well-Connected Awards "The 50 Best Products of the Year"
http://www.networkcomputing.com/1010/1010f1.html

Many of the resources I've mentioned so far are located on Apple's site, and it goes without saying that this is the best place to start learning about WebObjects and what it can do. Be sure to explore Apple's WebObjects product pages, especially their "Beyond Wizardry on the Web" section, which gives a more technical overview. (I'll leave it to you to decide if it is good or bad that all of the screen shots in this section are from a Windows machine.)

Apple - Products - WebObjects 4
http://www.apple.com/webobjects/
Beyond Wizardry on the Web
http://www.apple.com/webobjects/bwizard.html

On the more technical side, there are two key reports from independent parties which give WebObjects very high marks. One is an informative white paper from IDC, and the other is a detailed benchmark and feature comparison of a number of application servers written by TechMetrix. The actual report is a bit pricey, but there is an extensive excerpt on their web site which is detailed enough to reveal that WebObjects basically blew away the competition in their tests. This is probably the strongest objective praise I've seen for WebObjects. (A good companion to this is the article "More Than A Movement" by Information Week, which gives descriptions of all of the major contenders in the application server market.) Lastly, see "The Cost of Deploying WebObjects" on the Twin Forces web site, which gives a well-thought-out analysis of the real-world expense of running a site based on WebObjects, and concludes that it is a lot less than you probably think. It also includes a section on all of the different things you might want to measure in an application server benchmark, and reminds us how important it is to notice whether benchmarks are answering the question we really are asking.

Apple's WebObjects: An IDC White Paper
http://www.apple.com/webobjects/whitepaper/index.html
TechMetrix: Application Server Report
http://www.techmetrix.com/lab/benchcenter/appserverbench.shtml
More Than A Movement
http://www.informationweek.com/728/appserv.htm
The cost of deploying WebObjects
http://www.twinforces.com/tf/docs/WOCosts1.html
Benchmarking WO Performance
http://www.twinforces.com/tf/docs/WOBenchmarking.html

With the current popularity of Java, another question which will come up often is whether WebObjects allows you to utilize Sun's Enterprise Java Beans. The short answer is that it doesn't, and the latest word is that there are no plans to change this. This may seem bad, but really it isn't.

In a nutshell, EJBs exist mainly to manage object-to-database mapping and allow Java programmers to partially forget that their objects are made persistent by a relational database-to work with them as objects rather than data. This is exactly the task taken on by the Enterprise Objects Framework (a framework included with WebObjects), and as such it makes little sense to want EJB integration into WebObjects, because it isn't needed. (It might be possible to retool WebObjects to use EJBs in place of EOF, but this appears to be a step in the wrong direction, in terms of both design and performance.) There was an informative comparison of the two technologies in a post to the WebObjects mailing list, and you can read the archived version on the web. Whether WebObjects embraces EJBs in the future may well be a marketing decision, as even articles which mostly praise WebObjects point to this as a major departure from the industry and, therefore, a flaw (see, for instance, the CNET article "WebObjects: Apple's best-kept secret?" in the before mentioned).

WebObjects archive: EJB
http://www.omnigroup.com/OldLook/MailArchive/WebObjects/1999/1583.html

I hope this is enough to tell you what you need to know to give WebObjects a fair evaluation. An encouraging note is that an Apple engineer recently remarked that where 1999 was the year of hardware at Apple, 2000 will be the year of software. This is a tall order-1999 gave us the Blue and White Yosemite G3, the G4, DV iMacs, the iBook, AirPort, and feather-light PowerBooks. If 2000 even comes close, it will be amazing.

Next month I plan to continue with WebObjects, covering resources you'll need when you actually begin programming. You can get started early by reading the technical overview which MacTech published in 1997.

MacTech #13.05: An Introduction to WebObjects
www.mactech.com/articles/mactech/Vol.13/13.05/WebObjectsOverview/index.html

In the mean time, be sure to check out the links on the MacTech Online web pages at www.mactech.com/online/.

 

Community Search:
MacTech Search:

Software Updates via MacUpdate

Ableton Live 9.7.1 - Record music using...
Ableton Live lets you create and record music on your Mac. Use digital instruments, pre-recorded sounds, and sampled loops to arrange, produce, and perform your music like never before. Ableton Live... Read more
FileZilla 3.23.0.2 - Fast and reliable F...
FileZilla (ported from Windows) is a fast and reliable FTP client and server with lots of useful features and an intuitive interface. Version 3.23.0.2: Bug Fixes and Minor Changes Speed up icon... Read more
Vivaldi 1.5.658.56 - An advanced browser...
Vivaldi is a browser for our friends. In 1994, two programmers started working on a web browser. Our idea was to make a really fast browser, capable of running on limited hardware, keeping in mind... Read more
Safari Technology Preview 10.1 - The new...
Safari Technology Preview contains the most recent additions and improvements to WebKit and the latest advances in Safari web technologies. And once installed, you will receive notifications of... Read more
TunnelBear 3.0.8 - Subscription-based pr...
TunnelBear is a subscription-based virtual private network (VPN) service and companion app, enabling you to browse the internet privately and securely. Features Browse privately - Secure your data... Read more
NeoFinder 7.0 - Catalog your external me...
NeoFinder (formerly CDFinder) rapidly organizes your data, either on external or internal disks, or any other volumes. It catalogs all your data, so you stay in control of your data archive or disk... Read more
Coda 2.6 - One-window Web development su...
Coda is a powerful Web editor that puts everything in one place. An editor. Terminal. CSS. Files. With Coda 2, we went beyond expectations. With loads of new, much-requested features, a few surprises... Read more
File Juicer 4.51 - Extract images, video...
File Juicer is a drag-and-drop can opener and data archaeologist. Its specialty is to find and extract images, video, audio, or text from files which are hard to open in other ways. In computer... Read more
PDFpenPro 8.3 - $124.95
PDFpenPro allows users to edit PDF's easily. Add text, images and signatures. Fill out PDF forms. Merge or split PDF documents. Reorder and delete pages. Create fillable forms and tables of content... Read more
PDFpen 8.3 - $74.95
PDFpen allows users to easily edit PDF's. Add text, images and signatures. Fill out PDF forms. Merge or split PDF documents. Reorder and delete pages. Even correct text and edit graphics! Features... Read more

Latest Forum Discussions

See All

Niantic teases new Pokémon announcement...
After rumors started swirling yesterday, it turns out there is an official Pokémon GO update on its way. We’ll find out what’s in store for us and our growing Pokémon collections tomorrow during the Starbucks event, but Niantic will be revealing... | Read more »
3 reasons why Nicki Minaj: The Empire is...
Nicki Minaj is as business-savvy as she is musically talented and she’s proved that by launching her own game. Designed by Glu, purveyors of other fine celebrity games like cult favorite Kim Kardashian: Hollywood, Nicki Minaj: The Empire launched... | Read more »
Clash of Clans is getting its own animat...
Riding on its unending wave of fame and success, Clash of Clans is getting an animated web series based on its Clash-A-Rama animated shorts.As opposed to the current shorts' 60 second run time, the new and improved Clash-A-Rama will be comprised of... | Read more »
Leaks hint at Pokémon GO and Starbucks C...
Leaked images from a hub for Starbucks employees suggests that a big Pokémon GO event with the coffee giant could begin this very week. The images appeared on Reddit and hint at some exciting new things to come for Niantic's smash hit game. | Read more »
Silent Depth Submarine Simulation (Game...
Silent Depth Submarine Simulation 1.0 Device: iOS Universal Category: Games Price: $7.99, Version: 1.0 (iTunes) Description: | Read more »
Enneas Saga lets you lead your own demon...
Defend the land of Enneas Continent from the forces of evil in the new fantasy MMORPG from Lyto Mobi: Enneas Saga. Can’t wait? No problem. It’s available to download now on Android devices. | Read more »
Great zombie games in the spirit of Dead...
Dead Rising 4 arrives tomorrow, giving enthusiasts a fresh chance to take selfies with zombies and get up to other ridiculous end-of-the-world shenanigans. To really get into the spirit of things, we've gone and gathered the best zombie games that... | Read more »
Amateur Surgeon 4 Guide: Advanced tips a...
Amateur Surgeon 4 is still tackling the competition at the top of the App Store charts, so if you haven't tried it out yet, you should probably do that right away. If you've been at it for a while, though, perhaps you're ready to start expanding... | Read more »
Amateur Surgeon 4 Guide: Become the worl...
It's time to wield your trusty pizza cutter again, as Amateur Surgeon has returned with a whole fresh set of challenges (and some old, familiar ones, too). Starting anew isn't easy, especially when all you have at your disposal is a lighter, the... | Read more »
Le Parker: Sous Chef Extraordinaire (Ga...
Le Parker: Sous Chef Extraordinaire 1.0 Device: iOS Universal Category: Games Price: $2.99, Version: 1.0 (iTunes) Description: | Read more »

Price Scanner via MacPrices.net

Back in stock: Apple refurbished Mac minis fr...
Apple has Certified Refurbished Mac minis available starting at $419. Apple’s one-year warranty is included with each mini, and shipping is free: - 1.4GHz Mac mini: $419 $80 off MSRP - 2.6GHz Mac... Read more
Twenty-Five Years Of Apple Laptops – A person...
Among many other things, the often tumultuous 16th year of the new century marked the 25th anniversary of Apple laptop computers, not counting the optimistically named 16-pound Mac Portable of 1989.... Read more
Landlordy iOS App Adds Support For Appliances...
Riga, Latvia based E-protect SIA is releasing major update (version 1.8) to its Landlordy app for managing rental business financials on the go. Landlordy is iPhone and iPad app designed for self-... Read more
Holiday sale, Apple iMacs for up to $200 off...
B&H Photo has 21″ and 27″ Apple iMacs on sale for up to $200 off MSRP including free shipping plus NY sales tax only: - 27″ 3.3GHz iMac 5K: $2099 $200 off MSRP - 27″ 3.2GHz/1TB Fusion iMac 5K: $... Read more
Holiday sale: Mac minis for $50 to $100 off M...
B&H Photo has Mac minis on sale for up to $100 off MSRP free shipping plus NY sales tax only: - 1.4GHz Mac mini: $449 $50 off MSRP - 2.6GHz Mac mini: $629 $70 off MSRP - 2.8GHz Mac mini: $899 $... Read more
Mac Pros on sale for up to $300 off MSRP, ref...
B&H Photo has Mac Pros on sale for up to $300 off MSRP. Shipping is free, and B&H charges sales tax in NY only: - 3.7GHz 4-core Mac Pro: $2799, $200 off MSRP - 3.5GHz 6-core Mac Pro: $3699, $... Read more
12-inch WiFi Apple iPad Pros on sale for up t...
B&H Photo has 12″ WiFi Apple iPad Pros on sale for up to $50 off MSRP, each including free shipping. B&H charges sales tax in NY only: - 12″ Space Gray 32GB WiFi iPad Pro: $749 $50 off MSRP... Read more
9-inch Apple WiFi iPad Pros on sale for $20-$...
B&H Photo has 9.7″ Apple WiFi iPad Pros on sale for $20-$50 off MSRP, each including free shipping. B&H charges sales tax in NY only: - 9″ Space Gray 256GB WiFi iPad Pro: $779.95 $20 off MSRP... Read more
Apple refurbished 2015 15-inch MacBook Pros a...
Apple has Certified Refurbished 2015 15″ Retina MacBook Pros available starting at $1699. An Apple one-year warranty is included with each model, and shipping is free: - 15″ 2.2GHz Retina MacBook Pro... Read more
Back in stock! 13-inch 2.7GHz Retina MacBook...
Apple has Apple Certified Refurbished 2015 13″ 2.7GHz/128GB Retina MacBook Pros (MF839LL/A) available again for $1099 including free shipping. That’s $200 off MSRP, and it’s the lowest price... Read more

Jobs Board

*Apple* Retail - Multiple Positions- Philade...
Job Description: Sales Specialist - Retail Customer Service and Sales Transform Apple Store visitors into loyal Apple customers. When customers enter the store, Read more
*Apple* Retail - Multiple Positions- San Ant...
Job Description:SalesSpecialist - Retail Customer Service and SalesTransform Apple Store visitors into loyal Apple customers. When customers enter the store, Read more
*Apple* Products Tester Needed - Apple (Unit...
…we therefore look forward to put out products to quality test for durability. Apple leads the digital music revolution with its iPods and iTunes online store, Read more
SW Engineer *Apple* TV Frameworks - Apple I...
The Apple TV team is looking for a software...create features that reflect the look and feel of Apple TV. Description: Were looking for someone who is Read more
Hardware Design Validation Engineer - *Apple...
The Apple Watch team is looking for a Hardware Design Validation Engineer. This person will be part of the Apple Watch hardware team with responsibilities for Read more
All contents are Copyright 1984-2011 by Xplain Corporation. All rights reserved. Theme designed by Icreon.