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Programming

There's no shortcut to experience. Writing good object oriented code takes experience, but here are three practices to help you get off on the right foot day one with even the grumpiest of gray beards: Write all your code using Test Driven Development(TDD) Follow the Rules of Simplicity Tell Don't Ask Write All Your Code Using TDD Code written test first and code written test last is very very...
on Oct 3, 2008
Recently Alex Buckley blogged about a possible language change to allow Named Parameters in method calls. Today I had need for such a feature. I was calling this method public void startOperatorSimulation(int pos, int stepDelay, int opNumber) { ... } multiple times, which matches Alex's first use case for named parameters 'When a method has adjacent parameters with the same type but different...
on Sep 30, 2008
Sun Studio 12 delivers a comprehensive tool set for developers—C, C++, and FORTRAN compilers, Sun Performance Library, dbx Debugger, the NetBeans IDE, Thread Analyzer, Performance Analyzer—along with superior performance. A new article on SDN, Why Use Sun Studio 12 Compilers and Tools?, summarizes the features and points you to the free download. Have a look.
on Sep 18, 2008
I just read Rex Young's very interesting blog Turn a HTTP connection into a full-duplex communication Basically he uses HTTP Chunked Transfer Coding to create a full-duplex communication between client and server. Well I recently joined the Grizzly Project as a committer. One of the first things I did is write a Tutorial on How-to write a custom protocol with the help of Grizzly. In a way this...
on Sep 17, 2008
Chris Adamson recently blogged, "what are the advantages of distributed SCM, beyond the globe-spanning mega-projects?" I've been hearing that question for a long time; it started whenever a new engineer joined a Sun project and had trouble getting their head around TeamWare. But it's hard to answer that question except with, "try it for a while and you'll see." The reason...
on Sep 12, 2008
My primary interest is really internationalization, so my blogs sometimes veer into that realm regardless of language or platform. I'm keeping a more i18n focused blog on my own site: joconner.com. My most recent blog is about JavaScript file encodings. If that sort of thing interests you, take a look.
on Sep 8, 2008
You've used in-memory databases, such as HSQLDB (formerly called Hypersonic) or it's newer, faster cousin H2, but fewer have heard about the in-memory mail server, GreenMail by IceGreen. According to their site, "GreenMail is an open source, intuitive and easy-to-use test suite of email servers for testing purposes. Supports SMTP, POP3, IMAP with SSL socket support. GreenMail also provides a...
on Aug 7, 2008
If you're a Java developer and you've been around for any length of time, you've likely run into the issue of wanting to write something that can deal with different versions of the same Java API that may be incompatible. What got me thinking about this, is that I recently saw a forum post in the Atlassian Confluence Developer forum where someone was asking about how to get the version number of...
on Jul 31, 2008
Usually if you are working in a "big" project and doing a code review; if you have a vendor who develop some application for your company; if you have a fresh graduate developer ... you will find a lot of bad-practices in the code being written! I don't like to see System.out.println() in the code .. because simply, it doesn't appears in the log files!!! As a solution, you can use Aspects to...
on Jul 24, 2008
JSR #277: Stanley Ho explains versioning... Sounds like a bad idea to me... I have commented his post. Anyway, I think the idea deserves its own blog post: I hope to see some discussion about it. And I really wonder what your opinions are. Here it is: Major? Minor? Micro? Update? 3 or 4 numbers? IMHO, doesn't matter at all... Stanley, what happened to or what is wrong with my proposal of...
on May 30, 2008
As you pass data from the browser to the application server to the database, opportunities for data loss lurk. I highlighted some of those conversion points earlier, but I neglected a browser issue. The JavaScript layer has its own lossy points of interest. One of those points is the escape function. The escape function "encodes" a string by replacing non-ASCII letters and some other...
on Apr 22, 2008
Young developers who desire to learn how to build software in various intuitive programming languages, including Java, should check out a new java.sun.com hub in the New to Java Programming Center. Spotlighted there are numerous resource pointers to tutorials and introductory material: BlueJ, NetBeans IDE Blue J Edition, Greenfoot. Some of the resources are self-paced and interactive—a ton...
on Apr 15, 2008
You'd think this sort of problem would be resolved by now, but it's not. It's still almost impossible to quickly and easily migrate an application from the too common default Latin-1 to UTF-8 character set encoding. The problem isn't that UTF-8 can't handle the conversion. No, that's definitely not it. UTF-8 can represent any Latin-1 character and much, much more. The problem is that the Latin-1...
on Apr 13, 2008
I've had a surprisingly difficult time conveying my own definition of "Iterative Development" in the context of BPM development. If you are interested in such things, please take a look at my other blog for an explanation via analogy....
on Apr 10, 2008
This Washington Post article reports on the elimination of underenrolled Advanced Placement (AP) courses in American high schools. The subjects affected are: Italian, Latin Literature, French Literature and, hold on to your hats, Computer Science AB. (The College Board designs high school courses that aim to be equivalent to college courses. High school students who take the course and pass an...
on Apr 5, 2008
In his Disturbing Thoughts from a Developing Mind blog, fellow kiwi Mark Derricutt discusses a situation where new for loops don't provide enough power for a particular case. (And yes this blog has been sitting drafted but unpublished for ages :( ) The case in point is building a String from the concatenation of a List of Strings with some separator between them, in this case a semi-colon...
on Mar 25, 2008
I recently wrote a brief introduction to Beans Binding called Synchronizing Properties with Beans Binding. I was enthusiastic about Beans Binding, and then a coworker threw a wet towel on me. The conversation went something like this: John: I just finished an article on java.net. This API might be useful in this project. Coworker: Yeah, what's that? John: Beans Binding. It's an API that will...
on Mar 23, 2008
All the major closures proposals now have prototype implementations available. But until we can play with the final option "No Closures" we're not in the best position to make a good decision. So it is with pleasure that I announce the availability of a prototype for "No Closures". With this jar file and JDK 6, you can effectively cast a method to a SAM type. For those not...
on Mar 8, 2008
I would like to preface this entry with the fact that I am not suggesting a concrete syntax in the examples below. I am merely using the examples as talking points and illustrations of what I consider to be the "syntactical spirit" of the Java language. I will be the first to admit that syntax is quite subjective and typically creates consternation within the context of programming specifically...
on Feb 27, 2008
Josh Bloch makes some interesting points in his Javapolis presentation on the closures controversy. However having listened to the audio several times and read the slides at least three times, I am having trouble extracting the salient points from all the FUD (The presentation video of the talk is now also available) What seems to be happening is that much of that FUD is starting to...
on Feb 27, 2008