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Tools

I've recently started using Clover on my open source projects and it's an amazing product. I've not used the Ant tasks yet, but I am using the integration with IntelliJ. Wow, this is probably one of the most impressive products since IntelliJ itself! If you've not seen Clover before, it's basically a code coverage tool that will help you identify what sort of coverage you are achieving during...
on Nov 6, 2003
Oracle has relased today JDeveloper 9.0.3.3, a maintenance release for its IDE. It has dozens of bug fixes, most of them related to BC4J (its MVC framework).
on Oct 21, 2003
Rapid application development tools let you put together a great-looking mock-up of your app in no time, but often are of little use for the production version of your system. Visual GUI builders and data-aware controls are two such culprits. In yesterday’s post, I mentioned that all too often tools that help developers put out a really quick version of their application are frustrating to...
on Oct 15, 2003
Dear John…er...I mean Debugger: We’ve had a really good time together over the past 20 years. There’s never been just one of you of course. My debuggers have changed languages many times. First, it was Pascal, then C, then C++, and now, naturally, Java. But throughout our relationship, your purpose in my life has always remained the same. You helped me weed out those nasty bugs and make my code...
on Oct 1, 2003
One irritating thing I used to find in my early years of programming was the amount of time I spent on handcrafting details. Over the years, slowly but steadily, I have learned the art of meta-programming and I would say it is now the best tool in my programming arsenal. So what is meta-programming? It is programming using metadata. And what is metadata? It is data about data. For example,...
on Sep 3, 2003
After a few weeks of working on a project in our offices, a new environment is in the final stages of being set up and we've made the move over to the client site. The work that we've been doing so far has been more like prototyping/proof of concept development. As far as tools go, we've had an almost free reign on what we've been using. Me? I've been using J2SE 1.4, Ant, IntelliJ and some other...
on Sep 2, 2003
In my years as a professional programmer I have used many Revision Control Systems (RCSes). It's that software that manages and protects the software you use. One of the tools of the toolmaker. Many companies pay tens of thousands of dollars for this software, often licensing it per-seat, and yet a perfectly good free alternative exists: CVS. In fact I will argue that there almost no reasons not...
on Aug 6, 2003
It was at the end of day#3 at JavaOne and I was tired. I was tired of product pitches, tired of talking, and tired of listening to all the hype. I was collapsed in a chair looking forward to heading over to the JBoss Matrix showing so I could sit in a dark room and not have to speak to anyone without feeling guilty. So it probably wasn't the best time to be coming up to me and trying to...
on Jul 30, 2003
One of the things that I've been somewhat annoyed by is the sheer variety of data types floating around. I'm reminded of the old days, when connecting to a BBS and you had to specify even/odd parity, or the bit order - nowadays, you can pretty much just assume that you can connect with a PPP connection to get a TCP/IP "dialtone." I've been somewhat surprised at how long the data type problem has...
on Jul 14, 2003
I recently downloaded the M1 release of Eclipse for Mac OS X and I'm really pleased with the improvements over the previous release. The biggest change by far appears to be improvements to the underlying SWT implementation for OS X. These improvements are quite noticeable in the application's performance, stability, and general interaction with the IDE. The editor feels speedier...
on Jul 1, 2003
Duncan reports that I gently and kindly harangued him at MacHack about ant. I'm not so sure I was all that gentle, but I hope I was kind. It's interesting that after we talked, he said "You've got ant's killer weakness there." But what he quoted was not what I expected. His quote was: The problem with Ant is that it violates something we learned with Unix. Tasks aren't composable. But what...
on Jun 25, 2003

JavaOne

One of the surprising things about JavaOne for me this year is the amount of talk about Ant. Not the normal "Ant is cool" buzz that I hear (and which still amazes me), but a different kind of talk. There's talk of experimentation and trying out new things. And it all seems to be focusing on how to alleviate the burden that the decision to use XML as the Ant configuration format has...
on Jun 12, 2003