Wednesday, August 20th, 2008

WaveMaker 4: Point and Click Ajax

Category: Dojo, Utility

WaveMaker Studio 4.0 the Ajax based visual development platform for creating web applications has been released. Version 4.0 includes a new look and feel, usability improvements, and a host of new features.

Building applications has been made easier by a syntax highlighting code editor, improved widget drag and drop, undo, simplified data binding, more flexible css styling, and numerous usability tweaks.

Working with databases and web services has become a lot simpler. Forms are generated automatically, and applications can be setup to save data with just a few clicks. A new REST service importer expands WaveMaker’s already stellar support for web services. Developers can also create Java based services to connect a rich client to virtually any backend process.

The community version of WaveMaker Studio 4.0 is open source under the GPLv3 license and a fully supported enterprise version with role based access control is also available. Please go to for more information.

Christopher Keene is obviously proud of this release if you look at his blog post talking through the 9 steps to an Ajax app.

He talks about the goals for WaveMaker 4:

  • Lowest learning curve – WaveMaker 4 is the easiest way to start building Ajax applications.
  • Highest productivity – our WYSIWYG Ajax studio delivers best in class productivity for basic business applications.
  • Sheer beauty – our Dojo-based Ajax client produces jaw-dropping user interfaces.
  • Easiest mashup tool – nobody delivers a better mashup tool for web services Java classes and databases than WaveMaker.

And went on to talk about why he thinks the learning curve is low.

Posted by Dion Almaer at 9:56 am

3.5 rating from 21 votes


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The demos on wavemaker’s site don’t work for me (I get timeouts). A web dev environment without demo apps online is like a car dealership without cars in the showroom.

Comment by Joeri — August 21, 2008

I find the way this product is marketed very misleading. The premise is that it just wires together various open source technologies for you, which would be valuable if that meant you could meaningfully work with the application outside of the tool – that would mean you were not locked in.

But in fact, you can’t. WaveMaker adds a lot of proprietary stuff on top of those open source libraries. For example, WaveMaker doesn’t use stock Dojo widgets – it uses TurboWidgets, a GPL/commercial licensed framework owned by WaveMaker, which uses some Dojo stuff but is essentially a separate product.

There’s a ton of other client-side and server-side WaveMaker libraries, scantilly documented, with generated code calling it.

So just recognize that if you build anything in WaveMaker you are running on an AGPL/proprietary platform that you’re going to be paying license fees for perpetually, because there’s no plausible way to migrate your application so that it just uses the open source libraries they mention so prominently.

We’ve had a very similar tool called Visual Builder in SmartClient for over a year now, where you really can build applications that depend only on an LGPL license, and in that model I would not be comfortable advertising our product in the manner that WaveMaker does.

Comment by ckendrick — August 22, 2008

@Joeri – sorry, we launched a new web site in conjunction with our new release and so broke the demos {miscellaneous sounds of crow being eaten}

Comment by ctkeene — August 22, 2008

Calm down Chris. Try to be professional.

Everything I said was true and accurate. I pointed out – twice – that WaveMaker is GPL. I can buy a license to TurboWidgets right here – so how is it “FUD” to claim it’s a separate product from Dojo?

TurboWidgets is not Dojo – not the same widgets, not at all the same license – and if you thought that was a selling point it would be featured prominently on your website.

Instead your marketing places a great deal of emphasis on your product being “CIO-Safe”. There’s nothing CIO-Safe about inadvertently adopting a large GPL framework that you thought was just Dojo. The perpetual license fees come from the organizations who can’t accept a GPL license and can’t migrate away from what they thought was just a small amount of “glue code” generated by WaveMaker. Which is the exact impression you’ve left on several evaluators who also talked to us.

I prefer not to respond in kind to your “whack job troll” comments, but I will say that if your business strategy was, say, to sneak a major platform dependency in the door by pretending to be just a tool, thus sidestepping the much tougher criteria organizations usually apply to platforms, then your website would be a very effective way to execute that strategy. If this makes you as uncomfortable as it would me, you can demonstrate that this is not what you intend, at any time, by coming clean and putting your proprietary UI platform front and center instead of pervasively talking about Dojo, from which TurboWidgets borrows only selected utilities. It’s up to you of course.

Comment by ckendrick — August 22, 2008

@ckendrick – if your definition of being professional is stalking your competitors through the comment columns of prominent blogs, you might want to raise your standards a bit. Your assertions are neither true nor accurate – you are attempting to run the same kind of smear campaign of half-truth an innuendo on WaveMaker that you and your pal Sanjiv ran on Ext. WaveMaker bought TurboAjax last November and open sourced their widgets, including donating their grid to the Dojo toolkit. What part of open source do you not understand? Don’t you have something better to do with your time to post holier-than-thou open source drivel on the Ajaxian? Given that over the last year and a half, I have never once heard of your product, I would hazard a guess that customers are not taking up much of your time. Maybe if you spent more time on improving your technology and less time on playing junior investigative detective you would achieve better results!

Comment by ctkeene — August 23, 2008

OK Chris, you’re not addressing the issues, you’re just slinging mud.

TurboWidgets is a separate codebase, separate product and has a GPL license to Dojo’s BSD. It is sold by WaveMaker, not supported by a foundation as with Dojo. The way your website focuses on Dojo is misleading.

I called you on it because people were talking to us who had been mislead by your website.

Re: our announcement of GWT for SmartClient – if you think signing an open letter standing up for open source is a smear campaign, I really don’t know where to begin :)

You think this discussion is “marginalia”, in fact, this and the webguild threads are the #1 and #3 Google hits respectively for “WaveMaker SmartClient” and related searches that an astute evaluator might do. It doesn’t matter where we have this discussion, only that it exists. I find it very appropriate that people can discover the character of the two companies this way.

Isomorphic is set to triple in size this year, and I have no more time for you. Reply if you like, but you’ll be barking at the moon.

Comment by ckendrick — August 23, 2008

You poor, pathetic schmuck. You think if you pee enough on the shoes of other small Ajax vendors, that will make you look good. Check it out, buddy, we are both in the same boat! But hey, if your goal is to make the search term “WaveMaker SmartClient” Google higher, knock yourself out. At least you are providing comic entertainment for the Ajaxian crowd.

Comment by ctkeene — August 24, 2008

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