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Helma Development Update

Helma has been in development for 12 years now, and has been used in production for almost as long. Along that way, there were a number occasions when major new features were added to Helma. But at its core, we have remained true to the original design of a fully integrated, prototypal web platform.

The world hasn't stood still for the last 10 years, though. It is increasingly clear that not all challenges of tomorrow's web can be met using a fully integrated software package. Breaking up Helma and trying to make it something it wasn't designed to be seems like a bad idea given its level of maturity. This is why we started RingoJS to provide a lower level platform for server-side JavaScript that is more flexible and less integrated.

For Helma, this means that there we are not planning any major overhauls or new features. We will continue to support Helma for the indefinite future, though. There are large companies with major investments in Helma (ORF.at just did a major roll-out this summer). You can expect bug fixes and security updates will be released in a timely manner.

What does that mean for you? For production work, Helma is still a great choice if it fits your needs and mode of operation. Having a stable platform without new releases that break existing software may be a great feature here. However, if you are looking for cutting edge stuff, check out Ringo. It's nowhere near as mature as Helma, but it should provide a good, evolving platform for the years to come.

Whichever tool you choose, JavaScript on the JVM will continue to prove a secure and reliable platform for writing server-side applications.