What is a Docklet?

To introduce the concept of docklet, let's take a look at a typical web page template.
Web pages include static elements, such as text and images and dynamic elements like input form or data tables. Dynamic contents are usually based on Ajax which reduce the amount of data exchanged with the server improving the responsiveness resulting in a better user experience. Dynamic elements  are usually developed using JavaScript frameworks running on the client browser. This approach requires significant JavaScript programming, that is not necessarily bad, however, results in a code that it is not particularly trivial to reuse and maintain especially when the application has a large number of pages.  
The concept of docklet is more like an app for smartphones, rather than a web application. A docklet, is a specialized application designed to deliver a specific functionality embedded in a web page. (e.g. a simple component which  performs a specific task to retrieve and display the last entry in a blog).  

docklet is a reusable widget which can be packaged and reused across applications by simply including the package in the application library folder. 

Docklets try to harmonize development and user interface design. A well defined separation of the workspaces, allows developers focus on programming and designers concentrate on user interface without interfering with each other.


Docklets are based on the Model Widget Controller (MWC), that adopt the same concept of MVC, a widely adopted industry architectural pattern. 



The controller is responsible to decode the input URL and instructs the model and the widget to perform actions based on that input. The model manages the behavior and data of the application and the widget  returns the data needed to render the user interface component. 
As mentioned before docklets can be packaged and reused across the applications including the .jar file in the application WEB-INF/lib folder.

 

The DHTMLX Spring Link is a JavaTM class library that implements the docklet concept using Spring FrameworkTM and DHTMLXTM  Javascript component framework.

Subpages (1): Docklet Features