ZK is renowned for its “Ajax without JavaScript” since day one. But now, ZK has decided to befriend with JavaScript. What’s the catch?

“Ajax without JavaScript” is derived from ZK’s server-centric architecture, which uses a desktop-like programming model to shield developers from JavaScript and complicated server-browser communication. The focus on server-side Java application development makes it easier to leverage back-end data and services such as Java EE and Spring. Since no business logic is ever exposed to the client, developer productivity increases, and enterprise security concerns decrease.

While productivity and security remain critical for enterprise applications, we cannot deny that front-end technologies have evolved significantly in recent years, from fancy Bootstrap templates to the usability and dynamics of various web components and JavaScript widgets. This is where we decided to make changes. In ZK 8, we allowed developers to easily integrate and reuse any third-party JavaScript widgets or front-end solutions.

This new approach combines the simplicity and security of the server-centric architecture with the beauty and dynamics of the evolving client-side technologies. The shadow components were introduced to easily turn Bootstrap templates and off-the-shelf HTML pages into dynamic web pages with MVVM data binding in Java. Data-handler and client-side command binding made it extremely easy to incorporate any third-party JavaScript libraries, while allowing you to still enjoy the equally important server-side integration and security. All of these efforts allow developers to stay true to their Java roots, while effortlessly staying current with front-end innovations.

The new ZK 8.5 takes the best of ZK 8 and continues to push the innovation envelope. A major improvement on MVVM data binding at the client side enlivened pure HTML content with minimal effort. The Fragment component, in combination with Service workers, allows for caching and managing offline user data and easier Progressive Web Apps (PWAs) building. It also enables more accurate control on the client side, such as mouse cursor position, pressed keys, and entered and selected text. 

In addition, 24 freshly baked modern themes take your application to the next level and provide a variety of choices that match different business needs. You can also include multiple themes in a same application to provide personalized experience for your end users. The built-in WebSocket improves the server push performance and serves as a great tool for analyzing big data in the most efficient way. Other advancements include the introduction of a splitlayout component, an enhanced frozen component, stacked fontawesome support (thanks to user “szediwy”), HTML5 browser history management support, source map for WPD debugging, and much more.

ZK is made by Java developers for Java developers. The upcoming ZK 8.5 provides a great balance between the required server-side security and integrity and the client-side usability, look, and feel. Join us this fall and harvest Javascript from Java roots!
=+= Sign up free ZK 8.5 introductory Walk Through Session now =+=
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10 Responses to “Introducing ZK 8.5”

  1. Vincent Lee says:

    I’m very interested in the new 24 themes, is there any documents about this, can I integrate them transparently, I mean just have new jars in project?

  2. Jean says:

    Glad to hear that. Yes basically it is about dropping in the desired theme jars.
    Related document will be available along with the release next week. Stay tuned!

  3. Will says:

    Back to some years ago, when I had to choose a technology to build our own flagship product on, I opted for ZK among several more renowned (at that time) alternatives.
    When I talk to people and I mention ZK, very few know it, but I am really glad to confirm I did the right move.
    Zkoss team continuously improves ZK in features, robustness and flexibility, keeping it up-to-date to new technologies and trends.
    Eager to attend the webinar about 8.5 and to try the new features.

  4. Vincent Lee says:

    ZK and ZK charts and Calendars are all amazing, in a class by itself.

  5. Jean says:

    Thanks Will & Vincent, your encouraging words means a lot to us!

  6. Daniel says:

    The WebSocket is on the CE?

  7. Michelle Chen says:

    Hi Daniel,

    No WebSocket is only available in EE, you can check out the following link for more information: https://goo.gl/iQDeR8

  8. LiuYan 刘研 says:

    > … which uses a desktop-like programming model to …
    That’s what I said to others. It will make it easier for non-web developer to develop web applications using ZK.

  9. Great work! Completely agree with Will. I’m using ZK since 3 version and never regret it. Nevermind if the application is desktop like, or flat web page like, ZK theming or CSS styling fits smoothly.

  10. jeanyen says:

    Thanks Will, LiuYan and Lluis for your support and encouragement, we are glad to have you along the journey and we hope to continue being innovative!

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