re: Jahia's Java-Based CMS Leaps Into Crowded Race
In principle, we agree with Brett Martin, that launching a "community-based PHP CMS" is a VERY challenging undertaking. Although, especially in our sector, upheavals can take place quickly.
But that is not exactly what Jahia is proposing.
As a CMS Jahia is based on a singular vision: web application convergence (web, document, and portal) unified by the simplicity-of-use concepts of web management tools.
This innovative, functional convergence is undeniably accelerating, driven by business' demand for IT solutions. It has also resulted in a merging of the web application markets, the delineation of which essentially hinged on a technological separation that has been rendered obsolete.
Where technology structures markets (portlet > portal, files/document > DM), the principal motor of the current structural revolution in the web development software market is the necessary consideration of the multiple facets (collaboration, sharing, search, creation, grouping) of web development. This holds true regardless of their user-base (public, intra/extranet), the client platform (web, phone, tablet), the original market of the editors which all converge toward unification, and the development language and platform. JAVA is demonstrably one the most important platforms, on the order of PHP and Microsoft environments.
Jahia, as a CMS, does not try to compete with these frameworks as we are not PHP based. Jahia rather draws inspiration from the best general ideas those communities have to offer the JAVA community, which lacks the speed and simplicity of the world of PHP CMS development.
Essentially, the key to rapid development is a product's capacity to deploy simply with efficient development tools. This is what made Drupal a success along with a number of other PHP projects. With the concept of JahiApps, and its rich, powerful construction tool, Jahia Studio, we have put into practice exactly that which our clients and partners of many years (including a 12-month beta program) were looking for, and which we designed in the tri-fold manner: (1) the modular nature of PHP (2) within a JAVA environment (3) with a drag-and-drop graphical development tool capable of constructing an application on a indispensable foundation library of functions and application modules--ready to use, but totally customizable.
That is why when it comes to PHP's modularity, we do not claim to be "better than", but rather "inspirited by".
It is a nuance that is fundamental to a convergence between the communities, regardless of the underlying technologies. We even have left ourselves the option of using PHP as a scripting language for our modules (thanks to another great open source projet, Quercus).
Inversely and in a similar manner, it would be complicated to develop an alternative JAVA Content Repository given the lead taken by the Apache Foundation's Jack Rabbit project, or that of our other open source friend, Nuxeo (JAVA based ECM), named Apricot with the Eclipse foundation.
In contrast, though it is clear that the norm is JAVA-based (JCR= "Java" Content Repository), the structure and concept of the project is echoed in the PHP community, notably in the Jackalope project: "Jackalope is an open source PHP implementation of the PHPCR API, which is a PHP adaption of the Java Content Repository (JCR) standard, an open API specification defined in JSR-170/283. Jackalope's test-driven development aims to provide full client functionality for Apache Jackrabbit, the JCR reference implementation as well as being a base to build a full PHP Content Repository with no Java backend involved."
Good ideas tend to spread, and be carried across to different development communities, and that is what we have done with the structure of our modules (inspired by the modularity of PHP, and with the capability to use php as their scripting / presentation language).
Once again, the idea of convergence, and the convergence of ideas is neither UGLY, nor BAD, but rather GOOD, isn't that so?
All the best,
CEO of Jahia