Going Native With The OSGi Service Layer - Sascha Zelzer
by mfrancis on Nov 01, 2013
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OSGi Community Event 2013 (http://www.osgi.org/CommunityEvent2013/Schedule) ...
OSGi Community Event 2013 (http://www.osgi.org/CommunityEvent2013/Schedule)
OSGi is a dynamic module system for Java, supporting the development of highly modular applications. However, many concepts and design choices in the OSGi specifications are language neutral and can, for example, also be applied to native C++ application development. In fact, a vast amount of applications in many different domains (embedded, desktop, server, distributed, etc.) are still written in native languages like C++, for various reasons. In turn, many of these applications are in need of a light-weight modular architecture, fostering a service oriented design to minimize coupling between components and to maximize their re-usability.
The C++ Micro Services project (http://cppmicroservices.org) is a pure C++ implementation of the OSGi service layer, bringing a dynamic and service oriented framework inspired by OSGi to native application developers. Its scope is similar to the PojoSR project, a Java implementation of the OSGi service layer only. By only implementing the OSGi service layer, the complexity and foot-print of such an implementation is drastically reduced and its usage heavily simplified. Additionally, incrementally modifying an existing project to make use of the OSGi service layer can be viewed as an easy migration path to using a full-blown native OSGi implementation later on.
In this talk, the challenges of mapping the Java OSGi service layer API (based on OSGi R4.3 and Java generics) to an intuitive and easy-to-use C++ API are presented. Further, the properties of the native linkers of the major operating systems (Windows, Linux, MacOS) and how they effectively already implement parts of the OSGi module layer are discussed. These concepts will then be illustrated by looking at how a big C++ toolkit related to medical image processing makes use of the C++ Micro Services project and its OSGi-based service layer implementation. Furthermore, the relationship of the C++ Micro Services project to the recently initiated "Native OSGi" efforts, the related OSGi RFP 156, and other native OSGi implementations like Apache Celix will be discussed.
Sascha Zelzer studied Theoretical Physics in Austria and has been working with Java and C++ for the last ten years. While working on his Ph.D. at the German Cancer Research Center, he is also deeply involved in developing and maintaining a large C++ software stack primarily focused on medical imaging platforms. His current interests include modularized and distributed systems in C++, especially how to leverage the benefits of OSGi technology in a native environment.
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