Better on a Camel
July 15, 2016
Better on a Camel
Score 9 out of 10
Overall Satisfaction with Apache Camel
Apache Camel is used by many departments at Cox Communications, but not the entire organization. It enables quick and scaleable integration of diverse business systems at Cox and reduces development effort and resources. Various Camel components are used and there is even a customized version of Camel Http4 component. Also Camel fits well in the existing infrastructure at Cox.
- Camel has an easy learning curve. It is fairly well documented and there are about 5-6 books on Camel.
- There is a large user group and blogs devoted to all things Camel and the developers of Camel provide quick answers and have also been very quick to patch Camel, when bugs are reported.
- Camel integrates well with well known frameworks like Spring, and other middleware products like Apache Karaf and Servicemix.
- There are over 150 components for the Camel framework that help integrate with diverse software platforms.
- Camel is also good for creating microservices.
- Camel features and documentation can get confusing to new users. Documentation can and should be improved. Also it would help if there are more tutorials available. Certification in Camel and related technologies like Servicemix and Karaf would also help.
- The Camel infrastructure probably needs to be rebuilt (hopefully this may happen with version 3.0). At this time the latest production release of Camel (2.17.x) is not built with the latest version of Java (JDK 1.8).
- Camel should also move towards becoming a "heavyweight" ESB product, though this may detract from some of its desirable features.
- This is hard to guage, but definitely the effort and resources required to develop and deploy new applications has gone down considerably. Approximately 50-70% lesser resources compared to the traditional way of developing applications.
- Code complexity and maintenance costs have gone down, again over 50%.
- Unit testing has cut down on bugs in production. There are far fewer bugs than would have been the case with plain Java. Approximately 70% less bugs discovered.
- Camel is a free, open source product. It is free as opposed to similar proprietary products like Tibco Business Works.
Apache Camel has been the integration framework of choice, but I was not the person to make the decision to use it. Compared to other competing products like Tibco Business Works, etc., it is free and open source and its licensing policy is acceptable to the management of Cox.