Comparing Web Frameworks: RIFE

Well, it seems that the series of articles comparing all the different frameworks using Simon’s initial set of requirements is expanding. This time, Geert Bevin, the creator of RIFE, has done the same thing, using his own framework.

I’ve always found RIFE very interesting, but a little daunting for new users. It uses a lot of cool concepts, like web continuations, blueprints, constrained meta data, etc., but if you are starting at server-side development using Java, or if you come from a much simpler framework like Struts, then you might find all of this just a little bit too much.

Also, it seems that there are at least 3 ways to accomplish the same task for many tasks that you want to do.  This says wonders about the flexibility of the framework, but if you only want to ‘get it done’, you will probably stall with RIFE, trying to figure out which one of the options is the best for you; and then, after selecting one, you might start thinking that the other ones might have been better.

I’m sure that the amount of work Geert has put into his framework is making RIFE very flexible. However, I would still choose Wicket over RIFE, as Wicket provides a simpler entry point, in my opinion. I guess the real issue is how does each framework handle more complex requirements, though.

One thought on “Comparing Web Frameworks: RIFE

  1. Hi Guillermo,

    thanks for having looked at my article. I just want to say that the template variants are actual requests from users. I personally prefer the invisible comment syntax, however many people simply didn’t wanna look further than that to evaluate RIFE since they felt uncomfortable with that syntax. So I added 2 additional ones to cater for what the people’s preferences. I think it’s a bit stupid that the adoption of a whole technology stack would be hampered by something as trivial as syntax. The structure doesn’t change one single bit, it’s just an alternative way to present it. I’d hardly say that there’s 3 ‘ways’ to ‘accomplish’ the same ‘task’. You draw the same picture, just chose whatever color you prefer.
    The choice is easily made though, just use the one that ‘clicks’ for you.
    Best regards,


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