Welcome!

Java IoT Authors: SmartBear Blog, Elizabeth White, Pat Romanski, Anders Wallgren, AppDynamics Blog

Related Topics: Java IoT, Microservices Expo

Java IoT: Article

Component Development and Assembly Using OSGi Services

Using components to build software systems will provide many architectural advantages apart from promoting ease of reuse

This article introduces the concepts of Component Oriented Development and Assembly (CODA) using the OSGi Service platform with an example application. The article starts with an introduction to software components, elaborates with an example application, followed by an overview of the OSGi Service platform, and an implementation of the example application using this platform.

Introduction to Software Components
Components are parts that can be assembled to form a larger system. Electronic components such as ICs (Integrated Circuits) are assembled together to build an electronic system; similarly software components are assembled together to build a software system. Software systems have a static form as well as a dynamic runtime form. Software components can be assembled either in static form or dynamic form. In either case, the software component is an independent unit of development, deployment, and assembly. Using components to build software systems will provide many architectural advantages apart from promoting ease of reuse.

Age Calculation - An Example Application
Consider an application meant for calculating the age of people. Assume this application prompts the user to provide her personal details such as name and date of birth. Once the user provides the details, the application calculates the age of the person as of today and displays it with a personal greeting. Such an application can be built from the following software components:

  • UserProfile Component: Responsible for collecting the personal details of the user such as name and date of birth
  • Age Component: Responsible for calculating the age, given the date of birth
  • Greeting Component: Responsible for displaying the greeting message along with age of the person; needs to make use of the UserProfile component to obtain input from the user and Age component to calculate the age
  • AgeCalculationApp Component: Responsible for invoking the Greeting service provided by Greeting component

The components can be represented in a UML component diagram as shown in Figure 1. The dotted arrow lines in the diagram denote dependency.

Figure 1: Components in the Age Calculation application

Interfaces of Software Components
A software interface is a collection of software operations. Software components interact with one another by invoking the software operations. To facilitate structured interactions across components, each component exposes one or more software interfaces through which other components can interact. The exposed interfaces of a component are called as its "provided interfaces." Internals of the component implement the service contracts exposed by the provided interfaces.

Apart from providing services, a component needs to consume services provided by other components. The set of services that a component wants to consume is specified through "required interfaces". A component can work with any other component that provides the required interfaces. Hence there is no tight coupling between one component and another; the dependency of a component is only with interfaces and not with other components.

Interfaces in the Age Calculation Application
Let us identify the interfaces provided and required by each of the four components in the Age Calculation application.

Age Component
The Age component is responsible for calculating the age, given the date of birth. Hence it needs to provide a service for calculating the age. Let's expose this service through a provided interface IAgeCalculation. The Java code for this interface is given in Figure 2.

Figure 2: AgeCalculation Java interface code

In the IAgeCalculation interface definition, Calendar is a data type defined in java.util package to represent the date. IAge is a custom-defined data type to hold the age. The Java code for IAge is shown in Figure 3.

Figure 3: Java code for data type IAge

The Age Component can be represented in a UML component diagram as shown in Figure 4. The lollipop connector from the component denotes provided interface.

Figure 4: UML representation of Age component

UserProfile Component
The UserProfile component is responsible for collecting the personal information from end user and passing it back to the consuming component. Let us define an interface called as IUserProfileCollection to expose this service. The Java code for this interface is shown in Figure 5.

Figure 5: Java code for IUserProfileCollection interface

When the method collectUserProfile() is called, the component starts an interactive session with the end user to collect her personal information. During the user interaction session, the method isProfileCollected() will return false; after the user interaction session has finished and the user profile has been collected, this method will return true. At this time, the user profile is ready for pick-up by the consuming component and it can do so by invoking giveUserProfile() method.

giveUserProfile() method returns the user profile information through a custom defined data type IUserProfile. Java code for IUserProfile data type is given in Figure 6.

Figure 6: Java code for IUserProfile data type

The UserProfile component in a UML component diagram notation is shown in Figure 7.

Figure 7: UML representation of UserProfile component

Greeting Component
The Greeting component is responsible for displaying the greeting message along with the age. We'll expose this service through the IGreeting interface. The Java code for IGreeting interface is shown in Figure 8.

Figure 8: Java code for interface IGreeting

The Greeting component provides the IGreeting service, and it requires the IAgeCalculation and IUserProfileCollection services. The required and provided interfaces of the Greeting component can be represented using the UML component diagram as shown in Figure 9. The receptacle sockets in the component diagram denote required interfaces.

Figure 9: UML representation of Greeting component

AgeCalculationApp Component
The AgeCalculationApp component is responsible for invoking the IGreeting service of Greeting component. The AgeCalculationApp itself does not provide any service. The UML diagram for this component is shown in Figure 10.

Figure 10: UML representation of AgeCalculationApp

Application Assembly
Components are assembled together to build a software system. Components for an assembly should be chosen such a way that, amongst the chosen components the set of required interfaces is fulfilled by the set of provided interfaces. The four components of the example application can be assembled to result in Age Calculation application. UML component diagram denoting this assembly is shown in Figure 11. Connectors with a lollipop and a receptacle together show how two components assemble over a common interface (one component provides the interface and another component requires it).

Figure 11: UML representation of Age Calculation application assembly

Once an application is assembled, specific components from the assembly can be replaced with compatible newer components. Let us say we have two new components - GUIUserProfile and GUIGreeting, which have same interfaces as UserProfile and Greeting components, respectively. Then these new components can replace the old components to provide us with a GUI application. The application assembly would then look like Figure 12.

Figure 12: Age Calculation GUI Application Assembly

Introduction to the OSGi Service Platform
OSGi Service is a standards based software development platform. The platform standards are specified by the OSGi Alliance (http://www.osgi.org), formerly known as the Open Services Gateway initiative.  OSGi alliance is an industry backed nonprofit organization.

OSGi platform provides a modularity and component model on top of Java. Figure 13 illustrates how OSGi logically fits in a development / deployment stack.

Figure 13: OSGi From Development / Deployment Perspective

OSGi Framework
At the core of the OSGi platform is the OSGi framework defined by standards. OSGi framework is the runtime environment on which OSGi applications can be executed. OSGi framework specifies a common API using which application developers can develop OSGi applications. The OSGi framework specifications is used by OSGi framework developers also, who build implementations of the framework as per the specifications.

There are a number of framework implementations available from different developers. A few well known framework implementations are listed below:

The functionality of OSGi framework is divided into many layers. For our purposes, we shall focus on Modules Layer and Services Layer.  Figure 14 illustrates the layers we would like to focus.

The modules layer is the bottom most layer interacting with the runtime framework. The modules layer defines a modularity framework on top of standard Java so that modules expose and interact via well-defined APIs. Individual module is called as a "bundle" in OSGi. OSGi bundle is the atomic unit of deployment on an OSGi framework. An OSGi bundle is nothing but a Java Archive (JAR) File with some special manifest information that would be used by the OSGi framework when the bundle is deployed. Unlike a normal JAR file, which exposes all its code when it is deployed on a Java Virtual Machine (JVM), the bundle does not expose all the code contained within. Only code (Java packages) marked for explicit export is exposed outside the bundle.

Figure 14: OSGi Framework Functional Layers

Above the Module layer is the Services layer. An OSGi Service is defined by a Java interface. Any bundle can implement the service, and register the service with the OSGi Service Registry. OSGi Service Registry, defined as part of framework standards, supports a publish, subscribe, and look-up mechanism of exchanging services across components. A bundle can register the service that it has implemented with the OSGi Service Registry. A bundle requiring a service can query the OSGi Service Registry to look-up any registered service implementation. Instead of looking-up, a bundle can also subscribe to be notified on service registration / unregistration events. These mechanisms make the bundles that provide service and bundles that consume service unaware of each other, leading to independent development and deployment of these components. Once deployed, they can be  assembled dynamically using the OSGi Service Registry.

Implementing Age Calculation Using OSGi
The Age Calculation application has one bundle for each of the components. Each bundle has a Java package that is exposed for access from outside and an internal Java package. The exposed package defines the interfaces and the internal package contains implementation classes. The package diagram for all the bundles is shown in Figure 15.

Figure 15: Age Calculation Application bundles

The service provided by each bundle is exposed by using the OSGi Declarative Services framework. Using the same framework, each bundle also specifies the list of services it requires. The OSGi Declarative Services framework (also known as Service Component Runtime), will perform the work of registering the provided service with the OSGi Service Registry and obtaining the required service through look-up into OSGi Service Registry. Thus, the Declarative Services framework provides automatic assembly of deployed components.

As an example, let us consider the Greeting bundle. The Declarative Services specification of the components in this bundle is done through an XML file, which is given in Figure 16.

Figure 16: Greeting component Declarative Service Definition

The XML file contains following metadata about the Greeting component:

  • A component by name com.demo.greeting is defined
  • The component is implemented by the class com.demo.greeting.internal.Greeting
  • The component requires two interfaces - IuserProfileCollection and IAgeCalculation. These required interfaces should be dynamically wired to this component using setUserProfileCollection() and setAgeCalculation() methods on the component implementation class.
  • The component provides a service through the provided interface com.demo.greeting.IGreeting.

To understand how the Greeting component works, some portions of the implementation class is presented in Figure 17. The Greeting class has two field variables referring to the services required by this component. In the component Declarative Service metadata setter methods of these two variables are linked to the service reference (required interface). Hence when the Service Component Runtime (SCR) activates this component, it would call the setter methods to point these variables to objects which provide the service. For example, an instance of AgeCalculator object from Age component would be passed to ageCalculation_ member variable.

Figure 17: Implementation of Greeting component

The Greeting class's  implementation of greet() method obtains the user profile by invoking IUserProfileCollection service. From the obtained profile, date of birth is extracted and IAgeCalculation service is used to calculate the age. Finally the method displays the age along with a greeting to the user.

Output from the Example Application
The Age Calculation application, with console mode user interaction components, has the following output.

osgi> What is your first name?

Albert

What is your last name?

Einstein

What is your title (Mr./Ms./Mrs./Prof./Dr.)?

Mr.

What is your year of birth?

1879

What is your month of birth (1-12)?

03

What is your date of birth (1-31)?

14

Hello Mr. Albert Einstein, you are 132 years, 10 months, and 3 days old.

If we replace the Greeting and UserProfile components in the application assembly with GUIGreeting and GUIUserProfile components, the application output is as below:

The source code of the application can be downloaded as a zip file containing an Eclipse workspace folder. To open the source code and run the application simply unzip the folder and switch the Eclipse workspace to point to the unzipped folder. Choose the appropriate components in the Run Configuration to run either console version or the GUI version of the assembly. For example, for the GUI version, the following run configuration will be applicable:

More Stories By Piram Manickam

Piram Manickam works at Infosys Limited. He would like to acknowledge and thank Sangeetha S, a beloved colleague and friend, for her invaluable contributions in this work.

More Stories By Subrahmanya SV

Subrahmanya SV works at Infosys Limited. He would like to acknowledge and thank Sangeetha S, a beloved colleague and friend, for her invaluable contributions in this work.

Comments (1) View Comments

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.


Most Recent Comments
newuniverse 01/31/12 03:10:00 AM EST

Hi,
This is a very simple and descriptive example. Good job.

@ThingsExpo Stories
You think you know what’s in your data. But do you? Most organizations are now aware of the business intelligence represented by their data. Data science stands to take this to a level you never thought of – literally. The techniques of data science, when used with the capabilities of Big Data technologies, can make connections you had not yet imagined, helping you discover new insights and ask new questions of your data. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Sarbjit Sarkaria, data science team lead ...
In his session at @ThingsExpo, Chris Klein, CEO and Co-founder of Rachio, will discuss next generation communities that are using IoT to create more sustainable, intelligent communities. One example is Sterling Ranch, a 10,000 home development that – with the help of Siemens – will integrate IoT technology into the community to provide residents with energy and water savings as well as intelligent security. Everything from stop lights to sprinkler systems to building infrastructures will run ef...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Peak 10, Inc., a national IT infrastructure and cloud services provider, will exhibit at SYS-CON's 18th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 7-9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Peak 10 provides reliable, tailored data center and network services, cloud and managed services. Its solutions are designed to scale and adapt to customers’ changing business needs, enabling them to lower costs, improve performance and focus inter...
Artificial Intelligence has the potential to massively disrupt IoT. In his session at 18th Cloud Expo, AJ Abdallat, CEO of Beyond AI, will discuss what the five main drivers are in Artificial Intelligence that could shape the future of the Internet of Things. AJ Abdallat is CEO of Beyond AI. He has over 20 years of management experience in the fields of artificial intelligence, sensors, instruments, devices and software for telecommunications, life sciences, environmental monitoring, process...
Increasing IoT connectivity is forcing enterprises to find elegant solutions to organize and visualize all incoming data from these connected devices with re-configurable dashboard widgets to effectively allow rapid decision-making for everything from immediate actions in tactical situations to strategic analysis and reporting. In his session at 18th Cloud Expo, Shikhir Singh, Senior Developer Relations Manager at Sencha, will discuss how to create HTML5 dashboards that interact with IoT devic...
So, you bought into the current machine learning craze and went on to collect millions/billions of records from this promising new data source. Now, what do you do with them? Too often, the abundance of data quickly turns into an abundance of problems. How do you extract that "magic essence" from your data without falling into the common pitfalls? In her session at @ThingsExpo, Natalia Ponomareva, Software Engineer at Google, will provide tips on how to be successful in large scale machine lear...
The IoTs 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, will demonstrate how to move beyond today's coding paradigm and share the must-have mindsets for removing complexity from the development proc...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Ericsson has been named “Gold Sponsor” of SYS-CON's @ThingsExpo, which will take place on June 7-9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York, New York. Ericsson is a world leader in the rapidly changing environment of communications technology – providing equipment, software and services to enable transformation through mobility. Some 40 percent of global mobile traffic runs through networks we have supplied. More than 1 billion subscribers around the world re...
You deployed your app with the Bluemix PaaS and it's gaining some serious traction, so it's time to make some tweaks. Did you design your application in a way that it can scale in the cloud? Were you even thinking about the cloud when you built the app? If not, chances are your app is going to break. Check out this webcast to learn various techniques for designing applications that will scale successfully in Bluemix, for the confidence you need to take your apps to the next level and beyond.
There is an ever-growing explosion of new devices that are connected to the Internet using “cloud” solutions. This rapid growth is creating a massive new demand for efficient access to data. And it’s not just about connecting to that data anymore. This new demand is bringing new issues and challenges and it is important for companies to scale for the coming growth. And with that scaling comes the need for greater security, gathering and data analysis, storage, connectivity and, of course, the...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Fusion, a leading provider of cloud services, will exhibit at SYS-CON's 18th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 7-9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Fusion, a leading provider of integrated cloud solutions to small, medium and large businesses, is the industry's single source for the cloud. Fusion's advanced, proprietary cloud service platform enables the integration of leading edge solutions in the cloud, including cloud...
Digital payments using wearable devices such as smart watches, fitness trackers, and payment wristbands are an increasing area of focus for industry participants, and consumer acceptance from early trials and deployments has encouraged some of the biggest names in technology and banking to continue their push to drive growth in this nascent market. Wearable payment systems may utilize near field communication (NFC), radio frequency identification (RFID), or quick response (QR) codes and barcodes...
The increasing popularity of the Internet of Things necessitates that our physical and cognitive relationship with wearable technology will change rapidly in the near future. This advent means logging has become a thing of the past. Before, it was on us to track our own data, but now that data is automatically available. What does this mean for mHealth and the "connected" body? In her session at @ThingsExpo, Lisa Calkins, CEO and co-founder of Amadeus Consulting, will discuss the impact of wea...
SYS-CON Events announced today that DatacenterDynamics has been named “Media Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 18th International Cloud Expo, which will take place on June 7–9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. DatacenterDynamics is a brand of DCD Group, a global B2B media and publishing company that develops products to help senior professionals in the world's most ICT dependent organizations make risk-based infrastructure and capacity decisions.
The IoT has the potential to create a renaissance of manufacturing in the US and elsewhere. In his session at 18th Cloud Expo, Florent Solt, CTO and chief architect of Netvibes, will discuss how the expected exponential increase in the amount of data that will be processed, transported, stored, and accessed means there will be a huge demand for smart technologies to deliver it. Florent Solt is the CTO and chief architect of Netvibes. Prior to joining Netvibes in 2007, he co-founded Rift Technol...
We’ve worked with dozens of early adopters across numerous industries and will debunk common misperceptions, which starts with understanding that many of the connected products we’ll use over the next 5 years are already products, they’re just not yet connected. With an IoT product, time-in-market provides much more essential feedback than ever before. Innovation comes from what you do with the data that the connected product provides in order to enhance the customer experience and optimize busi...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Stratoscale, the software company developing the next generation data center operating system, will exhibit at SYS-CON's 18th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 7-9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Stratoscale is revolutionizing the data center with a zero-to-cloud-in-minutes solution. With Stratoscale’s hardware-agnostic, Software Defined Data Center (SDDC) solution to store everything, run anything and scale everywhere...
Angular 2 is a complete re-write of the popular framework AngularJS. Programming in Angular 2 is greatly simplified – now it's a component-based well-performing framework. This immersive one-day workshop at 18th Cloud Expo, led by Yakov Fain, a Java Champion and a co-founder of the IT consultancy Farata Systems and the product company SuranceBay, will provide you with everything you wanted to know about Angular 2.
SYS-CON Events announced today that Men & Mice, the leading global provider of DNS, DHCP and IP address management overlay solutions, will exhibit at SYS-CON's 18th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 7-9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. The Men & Mice Suite overlay solution is already known for its powerful application in heterogeneous operating environments, enabling enterprises to scale without fuss. Building on a solid range of diverse platform support,...
Whether your IoT service is connecting cars, homes, appliances, wearable, cameras or other devices, one question hangs in the balance – how do you actually make money from this service? The ability to turn your IoT service into profit requires the ability to create a monetization strategy that is flexible, scalable and working for you in real-time. It must be a transparent, smoothly implemented strategy that all stakeholders – from customers to the board – will be able to understand and comprehe...