MicroProfile Now an Eclipse Project, the independent initiative launched a few months ago to create a baseline platform definition that optimizes enterprise Java for microservices architecture, is now an Eclipse project.

The Eclipse Foundation Board approved the MicroProfile proposal on Dec. 14 by unanimous vote, which established the initiative as an Eclipse incubator project.

Mike Milinkovich, the foundation's executive director, announced the results of the vote on a Google Groups discussion page. "It is now official," he wrote, "and I believe that the project will be created and provisioned shortly."

All new Eclipse projects must go through an incubation phase, during which the project's team is oriented to the foundation's open and public processes, the project's branding is established, and the communities that will support it are identified. When Eclipse MicroProfile, as the project is now known, emerges from the incubator, it will be available under the Apache License v2.0 (ALv2).

In his announcement, Milinkovich encouraged the MicroProfile team to consider dual licensing of the project (ALv2+EPL). The reason the foundation wants the dual license, he said, is twofold: It supports the conventions of the Eclipse community and its license, and it supports the copying of code between projects within the Eclipse community. He offered to help gather any required permissions from prior contributors.

"There is no down-side to adopters in having this dual license in place," Milinkovich said. "So on behalf of the Eclipse community, I would respectfully ask that you consider this request."

The initiative was unveiled by its founders Red Hat, IBM, Tomitribe, Payara and the London Java Community (LJC) at the Devoxx UK and DevNation events in June 2016. (Brazil's SouJava Community joined later.) The following September, the MicroProfile 1.0 was announced during the annual JavaOne event.

"As a group we decided that there needed to be stronger and faster collaboration for working on new APIs and implementations that would make this new world of Microservices accessible to millions of Enterprise Java developers," Martijn Verburg, co-leader of the LJC and CTO of jClarity, told ADTmag in an earlier interview. "It was important that this collaboration happened pre-standardization, as it needed to be fast, throw away bad ideas, and provide the freedom to try new ideas! This is so that we can validate these ideas amongst the vendors and amongst the developers that will be using these new APIs."

The MicroProfile initiative was also launched, at least in part, as a reaction to perceived lack of progress on several key Java EE 8 specifications. The project focused initially on providing a baseline for these specs -- JAX-RS; the Java API for RESTful Web Services, Contexts and Dependency Injection (CDI); and JSON-P (JSON "with padding"). The founding organizations cited six to nine months during which there was "no movement" on these specs, as Oracle seemed to be sorting out its internal enterprise Java strategy. Oracle has since clarified its plans for enterprise Java.

The MicroProfile team laid out its reasons for choosing the Eclipse Foundation umbrella on the new Eclipse MicroProfile page: "We have determined that we have enough traction with the industry and community to be associated with a foundation. We picked the Eclipse Foundation as a suitable foundation due to its long history of providing great support for the Java Ecosystem and rigor with regards to dealing with IP."

About the Author

John K. Waters is the editor in chief of a number of sites, with a focus on high-end development, AI and future tech. He's been writing about cutting-edge technologies and culture of Silicon Valley for more than two decades, and he's written more than a dozen books. He also co-scripted the documentary film Silicon Valley: A 100 Year Renaissance, which aired on PBS.  He can be reached at [email protected].