Saturday, February 21, 2009

Stax Rox!

I just got done taking my first test drive of Stax, the Java Cloud provider. I haven't gone very far into it yet, but so far I've been *very* impressed with the development model. Here are the highlights:

  • Just went beta, no cost for a dev account
  • Easy to follow 5 minute videos to get you started writing your Cloud Java Web app
  • Very nice local dev environment, with easy to use tools to slog code from your desktop to the cloud
  • Trivial button-push creation of a sample Web App you can modify
  • The sdk downloads your app to your desktop for modification, it provides a built-in Eclipse project that fires up with no modifications
  • Trivial button-push to make a database (MySQL) for your application. (I haven't yet built my schema, I'm looking forward to watching the video for that.)

All things considered, this is the easiest Cloud I've had a look at. For Java devs, I can't imagine it getting much easier than this. (Although there are persistent rumors Google App Engine is bringing Java soon. Google also strongly understands the power of low-barrier-to-entry, so that'll be interesting.)

One downside: the User Agreement forbids several flavors of Open Source, notably the GNU stuff. For now, I'm sticking with the prepackaged stuff Stax gives you, so I shoudn't get in trouble that way.

If you've got 30 minutes to burn, you can have your own Cloud app up and running. The URL is here: