Blog

Jan 25

Getting Started With Pintura

By on January 25, 2010 1:07 am
This entry is part 4 of 12 in the series Server-Side JavaScript, Pintura, and Persevere 2.0

Pintura is a REST-style web framework that utilizes a layered approach to application development that facilitates straightforward, well-designed rich internet applications. Pintura forms the core web framework for Persevere 2.0, and consists of a powerful data modeling and persistence framework called Perstore, in combination with a REST-style web framework. You can read more about the goals and principles behind Pintura, but here we will look at how to get started writing applications.

Pintura-based applications normally consist of server-side data models with three layers: data stores, store models, and model facets. On top of this, different representation handlers (for serializing data to different formats) can be defined, but Pintura comes with a good set of these (including JSON, JavaScript, multipart, and Atom), so usually that is not necessary. This provides a well-structured separation of concerns, distinguishing storage configuration (data stores), core data logic (models), varying capabilities of access to the data (facets), and data serialization (representations). Perhaps the easiest way to understand this approach to take a look at an example application.

Jan 22

Introducing Pintura

By on January 22, 2010 2:43 am
This entry is part 3 of 12 in the series Server-Side JavaScript, Pintura, and Persevere 2.0

Pintura is a CommonJS/JSGI-compliant, server-side JavaScript-based framework for building rich Internet application with the REST architectural style, thin storage-oriented server design, and the consistency of end-to-end JavaScript. The Pintura framework forms the core of Persevere 2.0, and is the first framework built to run on multiple CommonJS platforms like node.js, Narwhal/Jack, and Flusspferd/Zest. It utilizes a layered approach to application development that facilitates straightforward, modular web applications.

Pintura is not a traditional MVC web server framework, which often conflate presentation and interaction concerns across the client and server, but rather follows the REST prescription of maintaining simple storage and serialization oriented server also known as thin server architecture or SOFEA. Pintura is designed to cleanly separate the concerns of presentation and interaction on the client, and storage and model logic concerns on the server. This design fits perfectly with comprehensive JavaScript frameworks like Dojo, General Interface, Cappuccino, YUI, and ExtJS that provide client-side MVC. In particular, Dojo has excellent support for standards-based JSON REST interaction that matches perfectly with this server-side framework.

Jan 19

CommonJS/JSGI: The Emerging JavaScript Application Server Platform

By on January 19, 2010 2:25 am
This entry is part 1 of 12 in the series Server-Side JavaScript, Pintura, and Persevere 2.0

CommonJS (formerly known as ServerJS) has become the essential hub around the development of server side JavaScript (SSJS). SSJS for years has suffered from fragmentation, but the CommonJS project has provided the momentum to bring different frameworks together and start building interoperable modules. SSJS is ripe with potential; JavaScript has been soaring in popularity and the ECMAScript 5 specification was recently accepted. JavaScript has proven itself as the language of the web’s client-side (even ActionScript is a derivative of JavaScript). The opportunity to use the same language on both client and server is certainly most realistic and viable with JavaScript as it avoids the need for translation.

CommonJS

CommonJS has focused on developing critical APIs for building reusable modules, particularly for server-side JavaScript environment. The server-side is generally based around database interaction, file I/O, HTTP serving, and the generation of data formats and HTML, whereas the client-side is based around DOM manipulation and the browser object model. There are certainly APIs that can be used on both sides, and JavaScript on the client and server invites the reuse of APIs where possible. The WebWorker, Indexed Database, and XHR APIs are promising to be enormously beneficial on the server side, and with excellent client server consistency. But still the server side requires special attention, and CommonJS is bringing the needed standards and conventions.