I played around with the first beta-versions of WebDynpro Java (WDJ) already some years ago, now that NetWeaver 2004s (AS ABAP 7.0) is available I also had the chance to go in for WebDynpro ABAP (WDA). This is the version we will probably work the most with, as it doesn’t need a separate runtime environment, is directly integrated into the ERP-system and thereby makes developing business applications based on ERP-functionality much easier.
I am approaching the topic by working through the book “Web Dynpro for ABAP” by Ulli Hoffmann, which treats the subjects with hands-on examples, various source-code excerpts and screenshots rather than abstract descriptions.
The WebDynpro-framework, development tools and runtime environment apparently bring a lot of advantages to (web-)application developers (and users):
- Declarative and graphical tools speed up the development of UIs
- The MVC-model leads to a clear separation of layout and business-logic
- Data-binding makes it easier to bring the data to the frontend and enables automatic type-checking
- The componentization-options allow reuse on the presentation-level of applications
- The runtime generates highly interactive, “flicker-free” screens running within a standard-browser
But I have to say that I also like programming BSP‘s with HTMLB and the MVC-model very much. This concept has most of the mentioned advantages too, but offers more flexibility I would say, especially when it comes to dynamically generating screens or parts of screens. WebDynpro becomes slightly complex there.
Those are also good starting-points to WebDynpro ABAP (besides the mentioned book):