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Java Trends 2019: Stable, Smart and Sophisticated

Java is a famous object of technological affection. Though remarkably stable, Java knows when to improve and please its gigantic community. Following Symphony Solutions’ review of the 2018 Java technologies in demand, this article will continue to inspect the Java trends of 2019  that are sure to hit the spot. Let’s find out what top Java technologies are still relevant in 2019 and what are some of the entirely new predictions.

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JVM Languages are Among the Must-Know Programming Languages for 2019

There’s a myriad of Java Virtual Machine languages, but some of them stand out among Java trends 2019. The 2018 RedMonk Programming Language Rankings observe the notable performance of JVM languages, namely, Scala, Groovy  and Clojure. The three most popular and mature non-Java JVM languages  have strengthened their positions in 2019, partly thanks to startups. They choose Scala, Groovy or Clojure over Java because these languages have a more laconic syntax, make working with multithreading easier and allow switching to Java on the later stages of the product life cycle.

Scala  has grown in the past few years, rebounding after a small drop in interest following the shipment of Java 8 which supports lambdas and stream functions. While it already gets more attention from A-List startups and companies like 9Gag, Twitter, Uber, Foursquare and Soundcloud, Scala and its programmers will be even more popular in 2019.

Groovy gains popularity as a scripting-like alternative to Java, supported by many frameworks including the much-appreciated Spock Framework. Programmers love Groovy as it simplifies both unit and automated testing.

Clojure  is doing pretty much as well as Groovy. Data scientists like its consistent and simple syntax as well as data-oriented design. As a result, it’s often perceived as an alternative to Python in the data science realm.

And having examined the rising trends in programming languages, tech experts and community enthusiasts keep saying the same thing: learn Kotlin.

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Keep Сalm and Learn Kotlin

JetBrains’ Kotlin has every chance to become a real programming marvel. The Symphony Solutions Java team has already given their credit to this programming language in the article highlighting the Top Java Technologies and Trends of 2018.

Quick facts about Kotlin:

  • According to the Stack Overflow Survey 2018, Kotlin is the second most loved language among developers.
  • It was the first time Kotlin appeared on the list.
  • Kotlin is leading among the fastest-growing programming languages in the world.

Though Kotlin has some interesting use cases, it’s the Android apps niche that can and probably will propel it. Google’s bet on Kotlin is another testament to the enterprise support for this programming language. It will be interesting to see if Kotlin finds its place in enterprise applications development or not.

Java Maximizes Its Effects on Scripting Languages

Not every programmer is a pro in Java development, but Java’s effects on other languages are something many of them experience. Just think of the massive number of languages that are now executed on the Java Virtual Machine. Various widely-appreciated scripting languages were written using Java, created for or ported to the JVM. This allows them to make use of the rich Java ecosystem.

Java developers sometimes choose scripting languages as a quick and easy solution for tasks like prototyping, algorithms and mathematics. They are especially helpful when you need to perform a complex task in a minimal number of steps.

Knowing the wide variety of Java Virtual Machine languages, the situation isn’t going to change in 2019. Think of Groovy, JRuby and Jython. These popular and tightly Java-integrated scripting languages can help developers incorporate scripts originally written in Ruby or Python with Java libraries. You can get extra info and some JRuby inspiration by reading success stories on GitHub.

Java has also become one step closer to scripting languages with the introduction of Java Specification Request (JSR) 223. Along with Java SE 6, which includes built-in support for script engines, it provides a standard interface and API to interact with dynamic languages running on the Java platform.

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Java Development Propels IoT to the Productive Future

Another niche where Java leads the pack is IoT architecture environment. According to the 2018 IoT Developer Survey by the Eclipse Foundation, Java is the favorite language for building IoT solutions. And the Java trends of 2019 predict the same, due to its interoperability and portability. All thanks to JVM, as it lets developers write code locally and then move it to small pieces of hardware like chips. Java is one of the best choices for cloud and gateway development from the entire IoT infrastructure. Isn’t it convenient to use the same ecosystem for data measurement, collection and analysis?

At the beginning of 2019, Oracle also updated the Java Card platform which provides security for smart cards and other limited-memory device applications. Version 3.1 of the platform offers increased support for IoT devices.

The Popularity of AWS Serverless Java Container Will Grow

Our previous article on the Java technologies in demand has explained why the shift from microservices to serverless architecture is so popular. When discussing the 2019 trends in Java technology, the Serverless Java Container takes center stage. The Java wrapper known as aws-serverless-java-container (version 1.3) makes working with AWS Lambda easier. It also allows developers to stop caring about the containers to host or the servers to run the code. The developer’s responsibility ends with the code.

Take an app written with Spark, Spring Boot, Jersey or Spring and run it inside AWS Lambda with minimal changes in code. A Serverless Java Container natively supports API Gateway proxy integration for Lambda with request and response mappings. You can also create custom model mappings using VTL. The AWS Gateway API starts each Lambda as a container and then translates API Gateway proxy events into the request format that’s accepted by the Lambda.

Still, there is one issue that hinders building scalable APIs with the Java frameworks mentioned above. It’s Java’s cold-start performance, meaning the latency you experience when a new AWS Lambda container is created and initialized. Unlike JavaScript, it’s quite a common issue with AWS Lambda functions.

Here’s why that happens and how you can handle it. First of all, containers have the limitations of a single request at a time. When two requests come at once, two containers will handle each of those requests separately and each with its own resources (e.g., thread pools, HTTP connection pools). Secondly, the bulkier the application, the higher the latency. To avoid this, the code footprint should be as small as possible, like in small apps with a minimum of required dependencies.

The Bottom Line

Java doesn’t stand still and continues its influence on the rest of the programming world. You may have noticed that some of the Java trends in 2019 overlap with the last year’s tendencies. That’s no surprise, since the Java platform is stable, doing well and attracting more admirers. The rise of the JVM languages, the breakthrough of Kotlin, the improvements in serverless architecture with AWS Java containers and the perfect match of Java and IoT infrastructure prove that Java has no intention of stopping in 2019.

At Symphony Solutions, we are always eager to discuss modern Java technologies with you. So, feel free to contact us anytime.