Welcome!

Java IoT Authors: Liz McMillan, Pat Romanski, Elizabeth White, Akhil Sahai, Ruxit Blog

Related Topics: Java IoT, Mobile IoT

Java IoT: Article

Focus on Java Mobility

Addressing Java ME-specific matters

For several months now a subset of the JCP's Executive Committees has been meeting as the Java ME Working Group to address Java ME-specific matters. In this column I'll focus on Java ME and on some of the issues that the Working Group has been discussing. (To follow our activities, check out our bulletin board at jcp.org.)

Fragmentation
Not surprisingly, the fragmentation problem is high on our list. In the Java ME space - much more so than in Java SE or Java EE - differences between implementations make it difficult to Write Once Run Anywhere. Developing an application that will run on many different cellphones requires very careful programming and extensive testing.

There are a number of reasons for this. Firstly, the Java ME specifications are much more modular than those for Java SE and Java EE, allowing many combinations and permutations of APIs. Even where two devices implement the same APIs, the implementations may differ for a variety of reasons: because the specifications are imprecise (either deliberately or through omission), because of different capabilities between devices, or simply because of bugs in the implementations.

Umbrella specifications such as JSR 249: Mobile Service Architecture (MSA) 2 address specification problems by reducing optionality and tightening requirements, but this is not sufficient. More comrehensive testing - above and beyond that performed by the TCKs - is also required.

Recognizing this fact, a new organization was recently formed by Orange, Sony Ericsson, Sun Microsystems, and Vodafone. JATAF (Java Application Terminal Alignment Framework) seeks to gather information about differences in Java ME implementations (whether or not these differences are caused by bugs), and to develop an open-source test suite that can be used by device manufactures and others to identify and hopefully eliminate these differences.

This effort can only succeed with the active participation of all Java ME developers. If you work with Java ME, please participate. Join the JATAF project at java.net, and report on your experiences with Java ME implementations. Implementation differences will be addressed by the development of tests and the clarification of specifications. Collectively we can all help to improve the quality of the platform.

Feature Phones and Smartphones
Another concern expressed by members of the ME Working Group was the widespread perception that Java ME is primarily a technology for low-end cellphones. While it's true that many (2 billion!) such phones are powered by Java ME, this is by no means all that the platform can do. Two JSRs that are expected to make their final releases soon intend to change this perception.

The Mobile Information Device Profile (MIDP) 3.0 specification adds new capabilities such as concurrency, inter-application communications, background processing, shared libraries, events, and improved user-interface components to enable the creation of Java applications that meet and exceed the capabilities of the most advanced smartphones..

Although JSR 249: MSA 2, addresses the fragmentation issue as discussed above, an equally important goal is to define a complete stack of APIs that will provide all of the functionality necessary to create fully-featured applications. The specification actually defines three profiles, for entry-level, mid-level, and high-end devices. Component JSRs include APIs for messaging, Bluetooth, contactless communication, user-interface development and deployment, graphics and multimedia, cryptography, and web services.

Cellphones implementing these two specifications will indeed be state of the art.

Beyond Phones
While Java's role in powering cellphones is widely recognized, we should not forget that the name Java ME stands for Java Mobile and Embedded. In addition to cellphones, Java can be found in printers and network devices, in vending machines and automobiles, and in consumer devices such as TV sets, set-top boxes, the Livescribe smartpen, and Amazon's Kindle. One of the most interesting and potentially influential uses of Java ME is in Blu-ray disc players.

Now that Blu-ray has won the standards battle with HD-DVD we can expect to see all optical-disc players migrate to the new standard within a few years. While the advatages that Blu-ray offers in storage capacity and high definition are well known, it's less widely understood that all Blu-ray disc players incorporate a fully programmable Java Virtual Machine with network connectivity. The Blue-ray disc Java (BD-J) specification is built on a combination of Java ME and Java-based TV sepecifications. BD-J provides a complete environment for the development of interactive and network-based video content. We don't yet know where this will lead, but the possibilities are endless. (Neal Young's Archives project is beginning to exploring this territory.)

Finally, a completely different application for Java ME is provided by Sentilla, who provide energy-management solutions for data centers by gathering data from tiny Java ME-based sensors that measure energy consumption and environmental factors such as temperature and humidity. This is a more focused approach than they originally adopted ("sensors everywhere") but it does suggest the way things will be done in the future. When it's possible to embed a Java VM with wireless communication capabilities in a device the size of a quarter then all sorts of possibilities open up.

For more news about Java ME and the variety of ways in which it is being used, visit the Mobile & Embedded Community at java.net.

Recent JSR Changes
JSR 316
, the Java EE 6 platform specification, is almost complete. The Proposed Final Draft specification was published in October, and the spec leads hope to go to Final Ballot before the end of the year. Releasing a platform specification always requires careful choreography of the component JSRs, since all must be brought to completion simultaneously. One component of Java EE 6 that required particular attention is JSR 330: Dependency Injection for Java, which made its Final Release in October. Since this JSR was approved only in May, it holds the record for the fastest passage through the process. Congratulations to Google and SpringSource, the Spec Leads, and thanks to the members of the Java EE 6 team and to the Expert Group of JSR 299: Web Beans for their efforts in coordinating the two JSRs.

Congratulations are also due to Star Spec Lead David Nuescheler of Day Software, whose JSR 283: Content Repository for Java Technology recently made its Final Release. This update to JSR 170 defines an abstract model and a Java API for data storage and related services commonly used by content-oriented applications such as content-management systems and other applications that manage a mixture of structured and unstructured information.

For full details of other JSR chanages please see the jcp-announcements bulletin board on the new jcp.org web site, which replaces the previous JCP-interest mailing list. (Sneak preview: we'll soon be introducing RSS feeds at jcp.org, so you'll be able to have the latest news delivered to your mailbox.)

Wrapping Up
By the time you read this article the annual elections for the Executive Committees will be complete. Any changes in membership will be effective on 17 November 2009, and the first meeting of the new Executive Committees will be on 8 December. Finally, within the next few weeks we plan to roll out a new version of the jcp.org website. We haven't quite decided on the final feature-list, but please vist the site, and register if you haven't already done so.

Until next time...

More Stories By Patrick Curran

Patrick Curran is chair of the JCP and director of the JCP Program at Sun Microsystems, Inc.

Comments (0)

Share your thoughts on this story.

Add your comment
You must be signed in to add a comment. Sign-in | Register

In accordance with our Comment Policy, we encourage comments that are on topic, relevant and to-the-point. We will remove comments that include profanity, personal attacks, racial slurs, threats of violence, or other inappropriate material that violates our Terms and Conditions, and will block users who make repeated violations. We ask all readers to expect diversity of opinion and to treat one another with dignity and respect.


@ThingsExpo Stories
For basic one-to-one voice or video calling solutions, WebRTC has proven to be a very powerful technology. Although WebRTC’s core functionality is to provide secure, real-time p2p media streaming, leveraging native platform features and server-side components brings up new communication capabilities for web and native mobile applications, allowing for advanced multi-user use cases such as video broadcasting, conferencing, and media recording.
IoT generates lots of temporal data. But how do you unlock its value? You need to discover patterns that are repeatable in vast quantities of data, understand their meaning, and implement scalable monitoring across multiple data streams in order to monetize the discoveries and insights. Motif discovery and deep learning platforms are emerging to visualize sensor data, to search for patterns and to build application that can monitor real time streams efficiently. In his session at @ThingsExpo, ...
There will be new vendors providing applications, middleware, and connected devices to support the thriving IoT ecosystem. This essentially means that electronic device manufacturers will also be in the software business. Many will be new to building embedded software or robust software. This creates an increased importance on software quality, particularly within the Industrial Internet of Things where business-critical applications are becoming dependent on products controlled by software. Qua...
SYS-CON Events has announced today that Roger Strukhoff has been named conference chair of Cloud Expo and @ThingsExpo 2016 Silicon Valley. The 19th Cloud Expo and 6th @ThingsExpo will take place on November 1-3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. "The Internet of Things brings trillions of dollars of opportunity to developers and enterprise IT, no matter how you measure it," stated Roger Strukhoff. "More importantly, it leverages the power of devices and the Interne...
Machine Learning helps make complex systems more efficient. By applying advanced Machine Learning techniques such as Cognitive Fingerprinting, wind project operators can utilize these tools to learn from collected data, detect regular patterns, and optimize their own operations. In his session at 18th Cloud Expo, Stuart Gillen, Director of Business Development at SparkCognition, discussed how research has demonstrated the value of Machine Learning in delivering next generation analytics to imp...
In addition to all the benefits, IoT is also bringing new kind of customer experience challenges - cars that unlock themselves, thermostats turning houses into saunas and baby video monitors broadcasting over the internet. This list can only increase because while IoT services should be intuitive and simple to use, the delivery ecosystem is a myriad of potential problems as IoT explodes complexity. So finding a performance issue is like finding the proverbial needle in the haystack.
The Internet of Things will challenge the status quo of how IT and development organizations operate. Or will it? Certainly the fog layer of IoT requires special insights about data ontology, security and transactional integrity. But the developmental challenges are the same: People, Process and Platform. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Craig Sproule, CEO of Metavine, demonstrated how to move beyond today's coding paradigm and shared the must-have mindsets for removing complexity from the develo...
SYS-CON Events announced today that MangoApps will exhibit at the 19th International Cloud Expo, which will take place on November 1–3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. MangoApps provides modern company intranets and team collaboration software, allowing workers to stay connected and productive from anywhere in the world and from any device.
The IETF draft standard for M2M certificates is a security solution specifically designed for the demanding needs of IoT/M2M applications. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Brian Romansky, VP of Strategic Technology at TrustPoint Innovation, explained how M2M certificates can efficiently enable confidentiality, integrity, and authenticity on highly constrained devices.
SYS-CON Events announced today that LeaseWeb USA, a cloud Infrastructure-as-a-Service (IaaS) provider, will exhibit at the 19th International Cloud Expo, which will take place on November 1–3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. LeaseWeb is one of the world's largest hosting brands. The company helps customers define, develop and deploy IT infrastructure tailored to their exact business needs, by combining various kinds cloud solutions.
Early adopters of IoT viewed it mainly as a different term for machine-to-machine connectivity or M2M. This is understandable since a prerequisite for any IoT solution is the ability to collect and aggregate device data, which is most often presented in a dashboard. The problem is that viewing data in a dashboard requires a human to interpret the results and take manual action, which doesn’t scale to the needs of IoT.
Internet of @ThingsExpo has announced today that Chris Matthieu has been named tech chair of Internet of @ThingsExpo 2016 Silicon Valley. The 6thInternet of @ThingsExpo will take place on November 1–3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.
When people aren’t talking about VMs and containers, they’re talking about serverless architecture. Serverless is about no maintenance. It means you are not worried about low-level infrastructural and operational details. An event-driven serverless platform is a great use case for IoT. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Animesh Singh, an STSM and Lead for IBM Cloud Platform and Infrastructure, will detail how to build a distributed serverless, polyglot, microservices framework using open source tec...
“delaPlex Software provides software outsourcing services. We have a hybrid model where we have onshore developers and project managers that we can place anywhere in the U.S. or in Europe,” explained Manish Sachdeva, CEO at delaPlex Software, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at @ThingsExpo, held June 7-9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY.
"My role is working with customers, helping them go through this digital transformation. I spend a lot of time talking to banks, big industries, manufacturers working through how they are integrating and transforming their IT platforms and moving them forward," explained William Morrish, General Manager Product Sales at Interoute, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 18th Cloud Expo, held June 7-9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY.
A critical component of any IoT project is what to do with all the data being generated. This data needs to be captured, processed, structured, and stored in a way to facilitate different kinds of queries. Traditional data warehouse and analytical systems are mature technologies that can be used to handle certain kinds of queries, but they are not always well suited to many problems, particularly when there is a need for real-time insights.
The 19th International Cloud Expo has announced that its Call for Papers is open. Cloud Expo, to be held November 1-3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA, brings together Cloud Computing, Big Data, Internet of Things, DevOps, Digital Transformation, Microservices and WebRTC to one location. With cloud computing driving a higher percentage of enterprise IT budgets every year, it becomes increasingly important to plant your flag in this fast-expanding business opportuni...
IoT is rapidly changing the way enterprises are using data to improve business decision-making. In order to derive business value, organizations must unlock insights from the data gathered and then act on these. In their session at @ThingsExpo, Eric Hoffman, Vice President at EastBanc Technologies, and Peter Shashkin, Head of Development Department at EastBanc Technologies, discussed how one organization leveraged IoT, cloud technology and data analysis to improve customer experiences and effi...
The Internet of Things will challenge the status quo of how IT and development organizations operate. Or will it? Certainly the fog layer of IoT requires special insights about data ontology, security and transactional integrity. But the developmental challenges are the same: People, Process and Platform and how we integrate our thinking to solve complicated problems. In his session at 19th Cloud Expo, Craig Sproule, CEO of Metavine, will demonstrate how to move beyond today's coding paradigm ...
Big Data engines are powering a lot of service businesses right now. Data is collected from users from wearable technologies, web behaviors, purchase behavior as well as several arbitrary data points we’d never think of. The demand for faster and bigger engines to crunch and serve up the data to services is growing exponentially. You see a LOT of correlation between “Cloud” and “Big Data” but on Big Data and “Hybrid,” where hybrid hosting is the sanest approach to the Big Data Infrastructure pro...