· Developement Tool: RAD 126.96.36.199 + Interim Fix 003 // Alphablox Toolkit is not supported in RAD7.0 currently
· WebSphere Application Server v 188.8.131.52
· WebSphere Portal Server v184.108.40.206
· Alphablox V8.4.0 is installed on top of WPS V220.127.116.11
Alphalbox Portlet (JSR168) Sample
This sample uses the default data source which is automatically installed with Alphablox.
Lines marked with red are important points of writting an JSR168 Alphalbox Portlet.
<%@ page contentType="text/html" import="java.util.*,java.io.*"%>
<%@ taglib uri="bloxtld" prefix="blox"%>
<%@ taglib uri="http://java.sun.com/portlet" prefix="portlet" %> //This line indicates we are using JSR168 API specification
String bloxName = renderResponse.getNamespace() + "chartBlox0";
<blox:chart id="chartBlox" bloxName="<%= bloxName %>">
<blox:data dataSourceName="Canned" />
Some Words about Alphablox and its Portlet
You may see a lot of Alphablox advantages on internet but not its shortcoming, here, based on my limited experience, I list some inconvenience of using it and hope they will be noticed and enhanced in the future.
1. Alphalbox support standard J2EE model, but it is not compatible with SOA architecture.
As I experienced, Alphablox does not provide any interfaces to support SOA, which means, it is impossible in Alphablox to invoke service which returns data sets in XML format.There are two ways to access datasource in Alphablox (please refer to my next blog: Tow different ways of accessing Datasource in Alphablox for more information)
a). work directly with sql statement
b). work with java.sql.ResultSet
2. It is impossible for an Alphablox Portlet to be a source portlet
However, it is possible for a Alphablox Portlet to be a target portlet. In this case, there is one thing you need to pay attention. Normally, you want the target Alphablox Portlet will change itself according to the different selection on the source portlet, if so, in the above blox code, the bloxName attribute should be different each time so that Alphablox Server knows this is a new one, otherwise, the blox will remain unchanged. To achieve this, one possible way is to use random value.
Random r = new Random();
int i = r.nextInt();
if (i<0) i="i*(-1);" style="font-weight: bold;">
String bloxName = renderResponse.getNamespace() + "standingRankingSeasonBox_"+i;
3. Unfriendly JSP Page
As we have seen on the above sample code, all Alphablox code should be written on the jsp, sometimes even the business logic which increased the complication of jsp page.