Hibtags

JSP 1.2 tag library for Hibernate 2.1

There's a time and place to follow MVC patterns

MVC is a widely used design pattern used in Java servlet development, supported and encouraged by frameworks such as Struts. MVC stands for Model-View-Controller, where the View is purely display or presentation logic, the Model is the business logic and storage, and the Controller integrates the two.

In this pattern, JSPs are often used for the presentation, and so a tag library such as Hibtags breaks this pattern because the View layer is not supposed to access the storage directly.

I've never been a big fan of MVC, but my two best reasons to counter the MVC uber alles mantra are:

  * MVC is not right for every system. Some systems are not that advanced to require the overhead that MVC creates. Also the development team may not be large enough to support or require the separation between presentation and logic.

  * MVC blocks skill development. There is a skill progression that starts with a webmaster who learns HTML, learns from JavaScript, and starts wanting more and more interactive content. Going from this skill set to Java development of writing handlers, understanding the controller architecture, and everything good that accompanies MVC, is a huge step. Simpler and easily adopted technologies such as PHP and simpler sites get built outside of the Java technology because this step is too hard for many people to take.

Hibtags is meant to be a bridge technology, allowing your system to continue to abstract much of the storage using Hibernate, while providing a workable framework for JSP authors to interact with the database. It is also great for rapid development and prototyping as JSPs are generally faster to develop and debug.

The tag library in the JSTL is similarly controversial, but I think anything that increases adoption will only help Java servlet development in the long run.

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