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Just starting out... learn Objects or Java?

I have been a web developer hitting against SAP using active server pages for the past 3 years using the dcom connector.

Since May of 2003, I have been introduced to WAS/BSP and have deployed a production app using the pages model (not mvc). I am now familiar with handling the data, the language basics (branching, case statements, etc) and am somewhat comfortable with it all. We have great guys coding on the backend R3 box and for the most part I never have to code my own modules.

Now that I see all the new J2EE stuff coming out with 6.4 etc, I want to know whether to invest my time learning ABAP Objects or Java.

I would love to do it all in .Net with the connector but the company has decided that WAS is the way forward along with Portals (for a different project I am not involved in)

So where should I invest my time? I am willing to commit to either but am quite frankly confused on the direction SAP is taking.

It seems that if I go the ABAP Objects route I could at least be useful doing function modules for things that can't be done in the J2EE side.... on the flip side Java is a great skill to have in the broader marketplace.

Pros? Cons? Suggestions?

Thanks!

James

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3 Answers

  • Posted on Feb 26, 2004 at 09:05 AM

    Hi James,

    you're really putting your finger on something here and I guess the advice always will be clearly shaded, according to who answers it.

    You have mentioned the relevant arguments already: Most of SAP code is written in ABAP already and this won't change in the foreseeable time, due to the fact that it would be plainly impossible to change this, even if wanted.

    > So where should I invest my time? I am willing to

    > commit to either but am quite frankly confused on the

    > direction SAP is taking.

    >

    This is something only you can answer. If you would move to switzerland, you had to learn either french or german (or even italian) depending on where you will locate.

    > It seems that if I go the ABAP Objects route I could

    > at least be useful doing function modules for things

    > that can't be done in the J2EE side.... on the flip

    > side Java is a great skill to have in the broader

    > marketplace.

    >

    > Pros? Cons? Suggestions?

    >

    You said it all.

    You mentioned that you already have ABAP skills in the company. It may be a chance to become the companies java guru? Who knows.

    Regards,

    Benny

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  • author's profile photo Former Member
    Former Member
    Posted on Feb 26, 2004 at 02:52 PM

    some more questions...

    in java, you are limited to using RFCs etc so basically any time i needed to hit table XXX just to grab a value and put it in the session i have to have someone code a function module for me. with abap i could just code it directly into the page.

    and as far as temporary storage of non business oriented items (like lists for navigation, other items) that would normally be stored in a table, is it customary using j2ee to put those tables into SAP or use some other DB? the easy answer would be xml i suppose...

    thanks,

    james

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    • > in java, you are limited to using RFCs etc so

      > basically any time i needed to hit table XXX just to

      > grab a value and put it in the session i have to have

      > someone code a function module for me. with abap i

      > could just code it directly into the page.

      Correct. That is reason enough <b>not</b> to write just small programs for small purposes in java accessing business data. Such things I would of course still write in ABAP.

      > and as far as temporary storage of non business

      > oriented items (like lists for navigation, other

      > items) that would normally be stored in a table, is

      > it customary using j2ee to put those tables into SAP

      > or use some other DB? the easy answer would be xml i

      > suppose...

      If you are only using them on the java part of things, then I would recommend to put them into tables there. No need to transport this into the ABAP system just to be able to get it back later.

      Regards,

      Benny

  • author's profile photo Former Member
    Former Member
    Posted on Feb 26, 2004 at 02:54 PM

    and one more question...

    is it safe to assume that some point in the future the codebase of the actual systems (HR, DW, etc not just the WAS stuff) will be coded in java as well? so that abap would be parallel but unnecessary?

    james

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    • Former Member Benny Schaich-Lebek

      Hi Benny,

      I am a java/.net developer and have a knowledge of ABAP programming language(no SAP knowledge). I see nowadays that Java and ABAP combination is great. I have looked at Netweaver and web dynpro. As they are built on eclipse it didn't take much time for me to understand it. Now I need to get my hands on ABAP. How? Does SAP WAS 6.4 sneak peek edition provide me a work bench for ABAP to write some programs? If not, how do I get one?

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