Dear JADE users,
We are pleased to announce the release of version 3.6.1 of JADE that we named â€œDonâ€™t repeat yourselfâ€.
The name of this release is related to the new Bean-Ontology mechanism that allows creating JADE ontologies by just writing the ontological classes (beans). Thanks to this mechanism developers do not need to know or care anymore about ontological schemas whose definition is typically tedious and error-prone. Furthermore it is possible to use Java collections (List, Set) as well as Leap collections within the same ontology according to developer preferences/requirements. The Bean-Ontology mechanism is not packaged within the JADE core distribution, but is included in the Misc (miscellaneous) add-on since it makes use of Java annotations to allow developers customizing their ontologies when they whish/need to deviate from the standard Java bean convention. As a consequence the Bean-Ontology mechanism requires JAVA 5 or later.
Even more important is the release of version 2.0 of WADE, the JADE extension supporting the definition of agent tasks according to the workflow metaphor. The most relevant feature introduced by WADE 2.0 is the integration with Web Service technology. By means of the Workflow graphical editor Wolf, it is now possible to import a WSDL from either a file or a URL. As a consequence the related web service operations become immediately available as building blocks that can be invoked by workflows. Another noteworthy improvement regards the possibility of executing asynchronous subflows that can be joined at a later step during the execution. This makes it possible to implement very complex parallel execution patterns in a simple and effective way.
A tutorial showing how to take advantage from these new features is under preparation and will be made available very soon.
A lot of work has been done on improving the usability of the platform. In particular the Wolf editor is now able to work with source files only. Compiled classes are only used when source files are not available. Furthermore many configurations have been made optional so that starting a WADE platform with default configurations is now very simple.
As usual, a sensible effort was spent in consolidating existing features, fixing bugs, and improving the documentation. Refer to the ChangeLog file on the web site for the full list of changes and improvements in respect to the previous version of JADE.
JADE 3.6.1 and WADE 2.0 are expected to be fully backward compatible with previous versions.
JADE is distributed OPEN SOURCE by Telecom Italia S.p.A. under the terms of the LGPL Version 2 License and it can be downloaded at http://jade.tilab.com/. JADE (Java Agent Development Framework) is a software framework that simplifies the implementation of multi-agent systems through a middle-ware that complies with the FIPA specifications and through a set of tools that support the debugging and deployment phases. JADE has successfully participated at the FIPA interoperability tests held in Seoul on January 1999 and in London on April 2001, and it has been extensively used within a number of European projects. It is completely implemented in Java language and the minimal software requirement is the version 1.4 of Java.