ClearNova Open Sources AJAX Development

Software startup ClearNova is releasing its development environment under an
open source license to help proliferate AJAX as the preferred tool for
building rich Internet applications.

Available to the public for the first time as a commercial product and under
the open GPL license, ThinkCAP JX lets developers build Web-based
applications that run businesses, said Steve Benfield, vice president of
strategy at ClearNova.

AJAX , short for Asynchronous JavaScript and XML, is a
set of programming tools that improve the user experiences for certain Web

players in the AJAX development space include
IceSoft, JackBe, Backbase and Nexaweb.

ClearNova plans on drinking from the same fountain for a long time to come
despite the trickiness in choreographing the moving parts of AJAX.

“AJAX is cool but what can you do with it and how can you build real
applications with it?” Benfield said.

“I call it the eight hour rule and that is: can your users use your Web
application for eight hours a day without beating their heads against the
wall? We’re designed to allow people to build business applications with
J2EE, open source and AJAX.”

Benfield said a lot of current AJAX tools allow users to take existing pages
and add AJAX features to it, but ClearNova’s ThinkCap JX development
platform allows users to build apps from the ground up from the client or
the server — or both.

ClearNova also does it with the help of point-and-click and drag-and-drop
tools that eliminate the need for programmers to write oodles of new code at
a time when they can’t afford to become JavaScript professionals.

For example, the ThinkCAP JX Framework, available as open source via GPL or
through a low-cost commercial license for redistribution, includes a full
set of menus, outlook bars and accordion controls; multi-row views of data;
and a model-view-controller framework based on Struts.

A royalty-free commercial ThinkCAP
JX license is available for $2,000 per developer.

ThinkCAP JX integrates almost 25 open
source frameworks and engines and runs on any operating system and Java
application servers such as IBM WebSphere, BEA Weblogic, Oracle 10g, Sybase
EA Server, JBoss, Tomcat, Jetty and Resin.

Alpharetta, Ga.’s, ClearNova also offers a ThinkCAP JX Workbench design
environment to leverage the ThinkCAP JX engine, although it is not required to
help build software in the JX framework.

This tool costs $499 per year and includes data binding, AJAX events and data-entry forms. It also navigates Eclipse to appropriate code areas.

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