New Spring AI Project Aims to Streamline App Development

Spring AI brings artificial intelligence to the most popular Java development framework.

VMware unveiled a new Spring project last week that aims to streamline the development of applications that incorporate artificial intelligence (AI) functionality. The Spring AI Project, introduced at the SpringOne developer conference in Las Vegas, provides a Spring-friendly API and abstractions that serve as the foundation for developing AI applications.

"The project was founded with the belief that the next wave of Generative AI applications will not be for Python developers only," the company said in a statement, "but will be ubiquitous across many programming languages."

The project team took "inspiration" from the Python libraries LangChain and LlamaIndex, which have become popular for implementing Generative AI solutions and can be implemented in other programming languages. The Spring AI project aims to provide a similar experience for Spring developers in the AI domain.

The abstractions provided by Spring AI have multiple implementations, the company says, enabling easy component swapping with minimal code changes. Spring AI introduces the AiClient interface, for example, with implementations for Azure OpenAI and OpenAI as AI backends.

Spring AI is described as a "Spring-friendly API and abstractions for developing AI applications," during a live chat session from the conference with Josh Long, Spring Developer Advocate at VMware, Dr. Mark Pollak, Senior Staff Engineer at VMware.

"Every programming language is going to want to interact with these AI models," Pollack said. Pollack pointed to such use cases as content generation, code generation, semantic search and summarization, which are supported by the project.

As the complexity of the use cases increases, the company says, the Spring AI project will integrate with other projects in the Spring Ecosystem, such as Spring Integration, Spring Batch, and Spring Data.

The open-source Spring Framework is one of the most popular software development frameworks primarily among enterprise Java developers. But it's also popular among Kotlin devs. VMware is the steward of the open-source project, and own the commercial aspects the Spring project.

Details of the project are available on GitHub.

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].