WaveMaker Rapid Review

The Latest WaveMaker is freaking Amazing – Look out Microsoft – Goodbye PB


WaveMaker is the next PowerBuilder for enterprise web applicationsMy very first WaveMaker database web application. Created in less than an hour via a WaveMaker tutorial, this was done before the take two article.

Has anyone seen the new WaveMaker? I wrote an article about it a while ago and was pretty impressed with the tool. I don’t remember which version I was using then but it reminded me a little of PowerBuilder, in that you can put together impressive applications in a short amount of time. WaveMaker is used for developing AJAX web applications (with nearly any database) very quickly and it was so far ahead of its’ time that it reminded me of PowerBuilder.

If you want to take a look at my original article you can look here…

WaveMaker delivers for the web like PowerBuilder did for client server

Well I downloaded the latest WaveMaker last night, and I was blown away all over again. The tool is much more refined than I remember and if you can believe it, even easier to use than before. The think I loved about WaveMaker before was that everything seemed intuitive, maybe because it is remotely similar to PB– I’m not sure but it just comes naturally — even more so than Microsoft products.

Too Dramatic? Maybe so – download it yourself and spend just one hour, then tell me I’m wrong…

Well let me get to the point here. Last night I downloaded WaveMaker, and I created a database driven application with one main table and a couple look-up tables. I didn’t want to try many-to-many relationships because I only had not planned on spending much time playing with it, well I wish that I had tried because my little test was too easy.

I plan on trying out the many-to-many relationship soon, I noticed that WaveMaker was advertising support for it, if my memory is right they even had a tree-view control for such situations. If that works as seamlessly this PowerBuilder developer may jump on the WaveMaker bandwagon again, and for good. The few things that I disliked about WaveMaker the first time around seem to be gone. The things that I didn’t like about WaveMaker before seem to be gone, I had problems before when making changes to my database, but this is no longer the case. I had trouble finding documentation when I needed it– this is pretty much no longer the case– the truth is that I never really needed the documentation.

I was never impressed with Java – but maybe WaveMaker is what Java needed.

My resume is decorated with more than half a dozen Fortune 100 clients spanning a period of 20 years and I can think of maybe one or two successful Java projects. Some of the projects were multi-year disasters, some had big-name consulting firms added on to save the project only to see them dumped entirely. I apologize if that offends any Java developers but it is the reality that I witnessed. I never witnessed a PB project failure, however I have seem some poorly designed projects that were an embarrassment to the tool. Java, like PowerBuilder is a powerful object oriented development development language that can work great with the right team, but it can be disastrous when put in the wrong hands. WaveMaker may be exactly what Java needs to take it to the next level.

I still don’t like Java but love WaveMaker and am taking a second look. I’ll follow up with more details, but I highly recommend you give it a try. The tool automatically (upon setting up the DB properly) handled setting up basic CRUD application including handling of the look-up table (via Foreign Key) in a way that was easier than PowerBuilder and much easier than Visual Studio using Silverlight, MVC, ASP or WPF. I expected a slight challenge in making the drop down work– but instead it just worked out of the box– and the way it worked was cool, the tool mapped the id and description columns auto-magically which in my opinion is cooler than PB or any Visual Studio .NET language– unless you fork out dough for third party controls.

I think WaveMaker has caught up to PB in productivity, and passed Visual Studio (Silverlight, ASP, MVC, etc) a while ago while Microsoft keeps jumping from one idea to the next doing each one just marginally better. Microsoft is great for making sample applications, and I think WaveMaker is beyond the making sample applications — I need to spend a little more time using WaveMaker but it looks like the real deal. If they go public might want to buy that stock.

Check back for more info soon.

Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
4 visitors found this review helpful
Add a Comment
Guest

Sign Up with Email