Great article with the biggest UNDERSTATEMENT of the year as it's title at Java Developer's Journal - "Is Complexity Hurting Java." The article was pointed to me by my friend Edgar Sánchez...here's a small taste:
"EJB. JSP. JMS. JMX. JCA. JTA. JAAS. JAXP. JDBC. JNDI. This is a partial list of the acronyms you'll find in the 228-page J2EE v1.4 public draft. Of course, I was able to assemble this list of acronyms before I reached the bottom of page six."
And then it gets better:
"Each one of the aforementioned acronyms is a specification unto itself, so all you have to do is read each one, and you'll be set! Let's see here...the EJB 2.1 PFD specification is only 640 pages, so we can cover that on Monday and Tuesday. On Wednesday we can review the Servlet 2.4 PFD specification, which is a more palatable 307 pages. Then Thursday we can download and review the JSP 2.0 PFD specification a mere 374 pages. Hmmm, maybe reading each of these in sequence isn't a solution either..."
"What is an acceptable time frame for a learning curve? Again, let's look at history. Both PB and VB offered a one week fast-track training course. A developer certainly wasn't ready to pass any certification tests after that one week. However, most students were fluent enough in the technology that after completing the course, assuming they used the technology on a daily basis at work, within three months they could be implementing business solutions. If we applied these same metrics to Java and J2EE, how would the technology rate? Right now, I believe the answer is very poorly."
"Specifications don't solve business problems they solve technology problems. Companies expect their programming teams to solve business problems. Take any average Fortune 500 programming team with little or no Java experience a team with a deadline to meet. Show them the number of specifications being released with J2EE 1.4. When you multiply that number by the complexity, size, and learning curve of each specification, I bet they become scared and want to reconsider the use of Java."