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The Groovy development team is pleased to announce the release of the first beta of Groovy 2.2, along with a bug fix release of Groovy 2.1.6.

Both Groovy 2.1.6 and 2.2.0-beta-1 contain fixes for the recently discovered JavaDoc vulnerability, that also affected GroovyDoc.

Let me highlight a few interesting points in this 2.2 beta.

Implicit closure coercion

Java 8 will feature lambdas, which are similar to Groovy’s closures. One particular aspect which is interesting with lambdas is how they are converted transparently by Java to interface types that contain one single abstract method. With Groovy closures, except for a few cases, we have to explicitly use the as operator to do the coercion. In Groovy 2.2, we are allowing the same transparent closure coercion to happen, but without the explicit as type coercion, and furthermore, we make it possible to work as well with abstract classes as well.

 

Notice how the closure is coerced into a Predicate instance. Without that new capabilities, we would have had to write the following instead:

That way, Groovy closure coercion to SAM types is as concise as Java 8 lambda closure convertion.

@Memoized AST transformation for methods

Similarly to our Closure memoization capability, you can now annotate your methods with the new @Memoized annotation. It will use the same underlying cache solution used for closures, and will cache the result of previous executions of the annotated method with the same entry parameters.

 

 

New DelegatingScript base class for scripts

With the CompilerConfiguration class that you pass to GroovyShell (as well as GroovyClassLoader and others), you can define a base script class for the scripts that will be compiled with that shell. It’s handy to share common methods to all scripts.

For DSL purposes, it’s interesting to actually delegate the method calls and unbound variable assignments to a different object than the script itself, thanks to the new DelegatingScript.

To make it more concrete, let’s have a look at the following configuration script:

 

 

@DelegatesTo with generics type tokens

The @DelegatesTo annotation, introduced in Groovy 2.1 that helps the type checker, IDEs, tools, to provide better support for DSLs using closure delegation strategies, works with generics token types as well. You can tell Groovy that the delegatee is of the type of the generics component:

 

Note the genericTypeIndex attribute of @DelegatesTo that points at the index of the generic component. Unfortunately, as the generic placeholders are not kept at the bytecode level, it’s impossible to just reference T, and we had to use an index to point at the right type.

Precompiled type checking extensions

The static type checking extensions introduced in Groovy 2.1 were working solely with non-compiled scripts. But with this beta, you can also specify a fully-qualified name of the precompiled class implementing your extension:

Type checking extensions now also support two more events: ambiguousMethods and incompatibleReturnType. 

Groovysh enhancements

Groovysh has been expanded with various enhancements:

  • support for code completion in various places, like imports, package names, class names, variable names, parameter names, keywords, etc.

  • a doc command allows you to open the relevant JavaDoc and Groovy GDK web pages to have more information for a given class, for example try in Groovysh:
    doc java.util.List

  • you can complete file names inside strings, particularly handy for your scripting tasks where you want to open a file with new File("data.|”) (where the pipe character is the position of your cursor), and then hit the TAB key to have the completion of the file name

OSGi manifests for the “invoke dynamic” JARs

If you’re using Groovy in the context of an OSGi container, the Groovy JARs contained the right OSGi metadata information in its manifest. However, it wasn’t the case for the “invoke dynamic” JARs, as the underlying library used by the Gradle OSGi plugin wasn’t supporting JDK 7 bytecode. Fortunately, this deficiency has been fixed, the Gradle OSGi plugin updated, and we’re now able to have our “indy” JARs work fine under OSGi has well.

Those changes have not yet been backported to the Groovy 2.1.x branch, but will likely be. We’re looking forward to hearing your feedback, for those using Groovy and OSGi.

For more details about the various bug fixed in those releases, please have a look at the JIRA release notes:

And then, go download Groovy 2.2-beta-1 and Groovy 2.1.6 on our Download area while it's hot!

Thanks a lot for all your contributions, and we’re looking forward to your feedback on those releases.


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