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Open JDK

Today I want to talk about something I've been thinking about a lot lately. I work in the Java SE Quality Engineering team. We do a lot of the testing that goes into ensuring the quality of Sun's Java. We see the new features in Java before anybody else does. As one of my colleagues says "we are the first customers of Java". Our job is to create "functional" test suites for new features in...
on Jan 19, 2006
While in Russia (see Shannon's blog) I wrote a long blog on undo, actions and various other things. At the time I felt this a bit long for a blog and so it languishes in my unposted blog queue (with many others, but that's a different story). I really liked the idea of writing a series of blogs centered around a real app though, hence this blog and hopefully more to follow. As part of the series...
on Jan 18, 2006
It seems to me that many issues that come up in Java stem from the "I don't want to have to recompile my code" argument. All kinds of design decisions stem from it too. We end up with systems that are written in two or more languages. What I mean is that we usually end up with a mix of Java code, properties files, xml files and other stuff. The properties files and xml files can be viewed as...
on Jan 17, 2006
Romain Guy has written a blog entry about SwingUtilities2, and I find it a little confusing because in one paragraph he's suggesting the reader to use this class, and in the next he is saying to steer clear of it. Maybe he's quoting someone else and didn't make that clear? In any case, Sun ships in our JDK a whole lotta private classes. It's relatively easy to dig around and find interesting...
on Jan 14, 2006
I have been using Generics now for almost a year now and have found a love/hate relationship with them. My introduction to what Generics would do to you was when I compile a project with a UniqueList utility class I have been using for years now. This is a simple extension to the ArrayList which does not allow duplicates, nulls and keeps them in order. I really like this class because it is easy...
on Jan 12, 2006
After coming out of holiday hibernation, Sun shows signs of integrating the bug fix I contributed late last month. I received an email thanking me for the fix. Brief, but containing everything I wanted to know, the email is below: Thank you for the suggested fix.I am working on getting the fix integrated into mustang b68.Thanks,  xxxx So far so good. Yes, I've heard that responses can be...
on Jan 10, 2006
I saw this question Solaris vs FreeBSD: Why Sun never make Java on FreeBSD and thought to say a couple things. Note that I am not involved with the management decisions around this, and don't know the reasons why Sun doesn't ship the JDK for FreeBSD. But what I see is that Frans Thamura's blog posting ascribes conspiratorial schemings on Sun that probably aren't accurate. One thing is that Java...
on Jan 9, 2006
I've added a few clarifying comments in italics below. Using the JavaTM Native Interface (JNI) is not something many Java programmers have to deal with, but when you do, you need to know something about native applications. Whether it's Windows, linux, or Solaris, each native platform and sometimes native compiler or even the release of the native compiler has slightly different issues, so I...
on Jan 9, 2006
Java is the programming language of the year according to the Tiobe index http://www.tiobe.com/tpci.htm. Although the index is purely an quantitative web based count of activity , it does also mean it is free from any editorial or company bias. The award is quite unusual as it measures the percentage growth. So that means even if you are bottom of the class you have a chance to win. If you are...
on Jan 9, 2006
How would you go about using the JMX API to instrument AWT events? What would it gain you? My colleague Jean-François Denise answers in detail in his blog. I like this example and have used it as a demo in a number of places, including the recent JavaPolis conference and this year's JavaOne. (If you were at my JavaOne talk, Jean-François was the mysterious figure driving the demo.) The...
on Dec 29, 2005
After so long anticipating this moment, after the deed is done, I feel like it was too easy. I'm definitely experiencing an anticlimax. I submitted the following from the "Submit a fix" button located on the collaborator page. Remember, you have to follow the steps to get contributor/collaborator status. Here's my submission for the javadoc bug for JTextComponent's getDisabledTextColor method:...
on Dec 22, 2005
After a brief rest from this public Mustang community experiment, I'm back. And I've found the perfect bug...it's easy to fix, very low hanging fruit that's just right for a new contributor to Mustang. What is it? It's bug/change request id #4994762, and I'm all over it. Bug #4994762 is a javadoc bug, priority 4 (low). Not too important as far as bugs go, but I'll have this fixed in no time. Why...
on Dec 22, 2005
In the Quality Team we try to automate our testing as much as possible. This is easy for tests of the core library or other functionality where there's no GUI. But when you bring in a GUI like for AWT/Swing tests then the test complexity goes up dramatically, because for some scenarios you need to verify the graphics rendered correctly. There's a general strategy we have in GUI testing we call...
on Dec 21, 2005
Berin Loritsch riffs off one of James Goslings claims: James Gosling Asserts that Safety is Freedom and heads into type safety in strongly typed versus loosely typed programming language. It seems the basis for Berin's argument (loosely typed languages are safer/easier) is to take an analogy from Ben Franklin that "Any society that would give up a little liberty to gain a little security will...
on Dec 21, 2005
For quite a long time I haven't posted to this blog. Along with my colleagues at Sun Labs I was busy working on several new features we are planning to release in the upcoming versions of MVM. Now we're pretty much ready, just smoothing out several wrinkles here and there. One of the two major additions will be the Resource Management API framework. Defined in the experimentalstuff.rm package,...
on Dec 12, 2005
We've been gathering input from customers on various features they would like to see us implement. At such a meeting one customer requested a variation of JPasswordField. I figured it would be interesting to blog on how you could modify JPasswordField to vary the level of feedback it gives you. I'll cover various pieces of Swing's text architecture in implementing one variation, as well as a demo...
on Dec 5, 2005
Since the Quality Team is so widespread (as I blogged before, Santa Clara CA, Beijing China, Bangalore India, Hyderabad India, St. Petersburg Russia and Dublin Ireland) we have a constant question of what time we need to hold meetings so the majority of us can participate. It's tough because for most purposes Santa Clara and the other teams are on opposite sides of the world and we're asleep...
on Dec 5, 2005
The other day I wrote about a patent some of us in the quality team received over a test execution scheduling tool we developed. While the patent and the software is interesting, the thing that's really interesting is what that software enables us to do. Namely ... because of DTF we are able to schedule execution of a tremendous amount of testing on a wide set of platform combinations. Without...
on Nov 30, 2005
Okay, go http://patft.uspto.gov/netahtml/srchnum.htm to the patent lookup service and enter this number: 6,961,937 Scan a few names down the list and you'll see yours truly. I'm speechless, astonished, and more. I kinda don't like patents, but there it is, my name on a patent. This means I'm going to have to hunt up my resume and add a new section on Patents Awarded. My gosh. I think that I...
on Nov 28, 2005
In my last two blogs I've covered various aspects of Actions. I had originally wanted to write about the changes to Actions in 1.6 but felt the background would make interesting blogs. I promise this is the last blog on Actions for a while;) In 1.6 we've overhauled Actions adding new features and fixing a handful of annoying bugs. For this blog I'm going to cover the new features and when you...
on Nov 21, 2005