The current 3.2 generation is a natural conclusion of the 3.x line, with Java-based configuration and REST having been recent focus areas next to Java SE 7 and Servlet 3.0 support.
For Spring Framework 4.0, our focus is on emerging enterprise themes in 2013 and beyond:
- First-class support for Java SE 8 based Spring applications:
language features such as lambda expressions; APIs such as JSR-310 Date and Time
- Configuring and implementing Spring-style applications using Groovy 2:
Groovy-based bean definitions; Groovy as the language of choice for an entire app
- Support for key Java EE 7 technologies:
including JMS 2.0, JPA 2.1, Bean Validation 1.1, Servlet 3.1, and JCache
- Enabling WebSocket-style application architectures:
support for JSR-356 compliant runtimes and related technologies
- Fine-grained eventing and messaging within the application:
building on our existing application event and message listener mechanisms
- Pruning and dependency upgrades:
removing deprecated features; raising minimum dependencies to Java 6+ etc
Building on the momentum and the preparation work behind Spring Framework 3.2, we intend to have yet another one-year iteration and reach 4.0 GA by the end of 2013.
We'll be tracking OpenJDK 8's schedule closely, delivering a first Spring Framework 4.0 milestone as early as April. Details will follow in further blog posts as we get closer to M1.
Let us know whether you have any particular favorites among the above, specific architectural requirements, plans to adopt upcoming technologies for use with Spring, …
P.S.: Don't miss our upcoming webinar on Thursday!
We'll be presenting recent Spring Framework 3.2 features and will conclude with an outlook for 2013, discussing the Spring Framework 4.0 plan and related work areas.