This section outlines what is probably one of the most excruciatingly difficult ways to build a web application. There are lots of other, better ways to do it. If you are a web developer who is comfortable with talking to a relational database directly from JSP, I’d strongly recommend a commercial product such as Macromedia’s Dreamweaver MX. If you’re building database-driven Swing applications, look at some of the tools described in Chapter 2. If you’re working on a larger site with several developers in different roles, consider using XML and XSLT, possibly in conjunction with Apache Cocoon (http://xml.apache.org/cocoon) and/or Struts (http://jakarta.apache.org/struts).
These disclaimers aside (hopefully delivering me from a thousand emails about what I am about to write), this application-building process is a very useful learning tool. Now let’s discuss how to build and debug a simple JSP application.
The concept is to build a simple web application that executes simple
SQL commands via a web browser using JSP. This section uses the MySQL
database installation created in Chapter 12. The
rest of this chapter assumes that you’ve installed
MySQL as described and created the
macjava database. See Chapter 12
for more details if you need a quick review.
Before getting data to display with your web application, you need to put some data into the database. Save the contents of Example 13-1 as init.sql in your home directory ...