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Java 2 Enterprise Edition has excelled at standardizing many important middleware concepts. For example, J2EE provides a standard interface for distributed transaction management, directory services, and messaging. In addition, Java 2 Standard Edition (J2SE), which underpins J2EE, provides a largely successful standard for Java interaction with relational databases. However, the platform has failed to deliver a satisfactory application programming model. Many in the open source community, especially smaller vendors, have chosen the alternative of developing frameworks designed to simplify the experience of building J2EE applications. Popular frameworks such as Struts, Hibernate, and the Spring Framework play an important role in many of today's J2EE development projects.