Dear JADE users,
We are pleased to announce the release of version 3.7 of JADE that we named â€œOSGAgentsâ€.
The name of this release is related to the integration with OSGi, a technology that provides a component system managing, among others, software dependencies and components interactions in a clean and formal way. Thanks to this integration it is now possible to run JADE agents inside an OSGi environment, package agents code inside separated bundles, update it by means of the bundle update feature of OSGi and give agents access to all typical OSGi features such as registering and using OSGi services. JADE-OSGi is directly available for download in form of a bundle from the main download area of the JADE web site. Such bundle can be installed in whatever OSGi environment compliant to the release 3.4.0 (or later) of OSGi. Starting that bundle results in launching a JADE container, where other bundles can successively create agents on top. People interested in recompiling the JADE-OSGi bundle should download the JADE-OSGi add-ons and follow the instructions included in the JADE-OSGi Guide.
Another noteworthy feature introduced with version 3.7 is the support for web service dynamic invocation provided by the WSDC (Web Service Dynamic Client) add-on. Unlike the majority of web service oriented tools, this add-on is designed to allow invoking web services on the fly without any class generation step. It is sufficient to create an instance of the DynamicClient class, initialize it with the URI of the WSDL describing the target web service, and then call its operations by means of the invoke() method.
In parallel version 2.5 of WADE (the extension of JADE that allows defining agent tasks as workflows) and its graphical development environment WOLF is also released. This new version supports decision blocks according to the BPMN notation, improved management of transitions whose ends can now be dragged from one activity to another and the possibility of attaching comments to activities and conditions. Such comments corresponds to Javadocs inside the workflow class and can therefore be edited both from the code view and directly inside the workflow view. Finally a wider support for web service invocation from workflows has been introduced including management of headers and dynamic invocation implemented, under the hood, by the WSDC add-on.
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 and WADE.
JADE 3.7 and WADE 2.5 are expected to be fully backward compatible with previous versions.
JADE and WADE are distributed OPEN SOURCE by Telecom Italia S.p.A. under the terms of the LGPL Version 2 License and 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.