Phew! Now it's done. Vaadin 7.0.0 has been released after 16 months of intensive development! The last weeks before the release have passed quite smoothly. The only considerable hiccup has been a change of behavior for some technically invalid layout configurations, that was introduced in RC1. We did however learn that some developers happened to rely on the previous behavior. While we couldn't roll back that particular change without reintroducing the bug that it was intended to fix, we did instead make an RC2 release where the invalid configurations behave in a way that should make it easier to realize the cause of the undesired result.
Aside from that particular code change, our focus has been on everything surrounding the core Vaadin 7.0.0 product, e.g. packaging, documentation and tooling. One particularly interesting fix was a workaround to a problem that made Eclipse crash on OS X when closing the Visual Designer. We have also released a maintenance release to Vaadin 6.8 fixing a couple of bugs as well as a security vulnerability that might occur if some debugging features are used in a particular way in production environments. On top of all this, some team members have also published new add-ons that make explicit use of some of the new features in Vaadin 7.
Looking ahead, we have two priorities, Vaadin 7.0.1 and Vaadin 7.1.0. The first maintenance release is scheduled to come in about two weeks with special attention on performance and major bugs that we did not consider critical enough to warrant postponing the final release. We will then continue releasing everything we have fixed in the form of a new 7.0.x release every second week. Maintenance releases for Vaadin 6.8 will also be made every four weeks.
Even though fixes are always important, things always get more interesting when new or improved features are included in the picture. We will therefore divide our work between fixes for the 7.0 branch and new features for 7.1, scheduled for April. This release should bring goodies such as server push, Sass arithmetics and support for IE10 without relying on its compatibility mode. We will finally add some icing on the cake by starting to prototype a new data grid component, new features for communication between the server and some other wild ideas. We will however wait until we see the outcome of those experiments before we make any commitments regarding when something might eventually get released.
All in all, it has been a huge relief to finally manage to release the first stable Vaadin 7 version. Now it's up to you to try it out and report all the bugs you can find so we can keep our feet on the ground instead of just floating around high on endorphins.