The JSON-B (Java API for JSON Binding) specification has recently released a public review draft. For those unaware, JSON-B is one of the key APIs slated to be included in Java EE 8. It is a very high level declarative, annotation-based API for processing JSON. Java EE 8 is also scoped to include an important revision of the lower level JSON-P (Java API for JSON Processing) specification.
These two APIs together are extremely important in making JSON a first class citizen of the standard Java platform, just like JAXP (Java API for XML Processing) and JAXB (Java API for XML Binding) did many years ago for XML. With these two APIs in place Java developers can simply think of JSON as yet another Java serialization format. No more third party libraries and no more configuration – things will simply work out of the box when it comes to processing JSON. In my view these APIs are so critical they should indeed be moved to a modular Java SE release, much like JAXB and JAXP are already a part of Java SE.
You can download and take a look at the draft specification from the JCP site. A release of the reference implementation is also available here, complete with Maven coordinates. You should also note the read-only GitHub mirror. If you are looking for a gentler introduction, the best resource is a slide deck from specification lead Dmitry Kornilov (click here if you can’t see the embedded slide deck).
You should do your part demonstrating first hand that JSON-B is a critical standard for Java – by engaging actively. Here are the many ways you can engage (most of this comes directly from the Adopt-a-JSR page I drafted while still at Oracle):
- You can join the specification itself as an expert or a contributor. You can do that via the JCP page for the specification.
- You can have your JUG officially support the standard through Adopt-a-JSR.
- You can simply join the discussion without any ceremony by subscribing to the JSON-B specification user alias.
- You can share ideas and feedback, possibly by entering issues in the public issue tracker.
- You can read the public draft specification now.
- You can try out the reference implementation now.
- You can write or speak about JSON-B now.
- You can encourage others to participate.
The next step is up to you. You can be a real part of Java’s ongoing success yourself instead of simply being a passive consumer. If you have any questions I am happy to try to help – just drop me a note any time.