Generating Java with Tobago MDA

In the past two years we have been investigating several alternatives to kick start our Java applications. Most important requirements for the kickstart-tools for use were:

  • Model based, we prefer UML
  • Adjustible and flexible stack so other frameworks can be applied
  • Code quality equal to our handwritten code quality
  • Based on Ant, rather than Maven2

After having looked at JBoss Seam and AppFuse, we tried CapGemini’s Tobago MDA. The generator comes with a simple but powerful objectmodel and an easy to understand templating mechanism. Tobago is able to parse an UML XMI metamodel containing smart use cases and a UML class diagram containing business classes, value types and smart reference and applies our own templates (instead of the ADP templates for .NET projects) to the parsed metamodel.

In January 2009 we did present our own Java templates which took me about two months to develop. We applied these templates to two small business cases, and the results are promising: we can generate a fully deployable Java EAR using several open source Java frameworks like Ant, Freemarker, Struts2, Spring and JPA/Hibernate3. The templates implement several patterns from the ADP like the Smart Reference, Factories and Value Objects which are used in components like EJB3 business services and JPA business entities.



When you are interested in our progress, please keep up with the wiki or visit the Avisi website

In reference to the previous post I can announce the I am working together with Sander Hoogendoorn on a proposal for several Java oriented conferences in the Benelux, so we can share our experience with other developers.

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