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04 Sep 2009, 14:18
Johannes Deutschland (8 posts)

Hello, I read an articel about Grails. And there was a qoute from the creators. They said that they wouldn´t create Grails if they knew that Scala would be coming up. So is Grails unnecessary ? I mean have this language still something to offer ?


06 Sep 2009, 00:16
Dave Klein (34 posts)

I think you’re referring to this blog post: , where the original creator of the Groovy language said that he would not have created it if he had seen Scala. That doesn’t mean he sees no value in Groovy, but that he wouldn’t have gone through the work of creating an alternate language for the JVM if he had seen Scala, which he obviously prefers. The Groovy language we have today has gone well beyond what the original creator built, and is now being used in very large mission-critical applications around the world. Groovy serves a different need from Scala, and it serves that need very well.

Grails, the web framework, uses the Groovy language to increase developer productivity, in ways that I don’t believe could be done with Scala. But Grails is more than just Groovy; it is a framework that brings together several other frameworks and design principles to make building JEE web applications easier than ever.

By the way, the original creator of Grails is still the project lead and the head of Grails development at SpringSource.

06 Sep 2009, 13:25
Johannes Deutschland (8 posts)

Thanks David for your time and great answer. I am not afraid to learn a new language but I was a little bit shocked after I read the article.

You say Grails serves a different need. Can you explain what you mean with this statement ? I want to make some little web apps maybe scala isn´t what I am searching for :D

Thanks again!

08 Sep 2009, 11:53
Dave Klein (34 posts)

The Groovy language serves the need for a more dynamic, flexible, powerful version of Java. It integrates better with Java than any other dynamic language on the JVM and is very easy for Java developers to learn. In fact, since almost all Java code is also valid Groovy code there is almost no learning curve. So, rather than waiting until Java 10 for features such as closures, you can have them now with Groovy.

Grails, the web framework, fills the need for a way to develop Java based web applications without wasting countless hours fighting the complexities of Java, the Servlet API, and the many XML configured technologies that are usually involved. Frameworks like Spring and Hibernate have gone part of the way towards filling this need, but Grails picks them up and takes them much further. So, if you want to build web applications that run in a Java container (Tomcat, Jetty, GlassFish, JBoss, Weblogic, OAS, etc) then Grails is, in my opinion, the best choice!

Hope that helps, Dave

25 Nov 2009, 14:45
John McKown (11 posts)

I’ve just been reading the “Programming Groovy” book (still in progress). I’ve already read the Scala and Clojure books. I’m a rank novice at all of this, but just from what I’ve read so far, it appears that Groovy and Scala are quite similar, but that Groovy has even more functionality. I.e. I cannot think of anything that Scala can do which Groovy cannot. But Groovy can do things that Scala cannot. I don’t mean to start a war, but what do you think of this observation by a novice? Boiled down, it means that if I can only really become proficient in one of them, then Groovy is likely going to have a better ROI for my learning effort.

As an aside, I am considering whether to try to get one of these, likely Groovy, running on a very weird “UNIX” system. Likely you’ve never heard of it. It is z/OS and runs on IBM z series hardware. One way in which it is weird is that it is not an ASCII or Unicode based system. It is based on EBCDIC, which basically only it uses. A completely different and incompatible code. It really is UNIX because it has been officially branded as such by X/Open. It is also fully POSIX compliant. Likely more than anybody really cared about.

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