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A reference to this article by Clay Shirky was posted to a Patterns mailing list I belong to. I found the new perspective on software engineering so fascinating that I thought others would be interested as well. Mr. Shirky describes his experiences while teaching at NYU and the approaches his students took when creating software for very specific, well-known social groups. He's basically...
on Mar 31, 2004


The goal of research is to evaluate a new idea and create a body of work that can improve the methods of scientific inquiry, either by simplifying the process or by uncovering new knowledge. When research-driven software exists in the public domain it is serving this very purpose. However, it is too common to download a new algorithm or API and find it sparsely documented in terms of overall...
on Mar 31, 2004
JSTL's SQL and XML are controversial taglibs. A lot of people complain they hurt the MVC principles, while others defend they can be useful in some situations (specially on protoypes and small projects). The truth is, both sides are right: it can causes great havoc in a MVC-based application, but it is an invaluable tool in small, time-limited projects like the one shown below Now let's forget...
on Mar 26, 2004
First, I was amused to see James's Gosling's report that John Munsch was ticked off by James's JNN. Well, not that amused. I'll throw oil on the fire. About a month ago, I tried Munsch's HotSheet. OK, but not compelling; a few things didn't work right; things I subscribed to didn't stay subscribed; and so on. So I tried JNN the day I read about it, and it's GREAT. Lots of fun, does more or...
on Mar 26, 2004
As the News Director, I have my fair share of sources of Java news, announcements, and banter that I try to keep an eye on daily. This morning I finished putting together one site, one rss feed, that gets everything related to Java. PlanetJava is it's name and java rss feeds is its game. You can grab the latest from The Server Side, developerWorks, XMLhack, Jason Hunter, etc etc etc....
on Mar 19, 2004

Open Source

No would believe me if I posted this tomorrow (April 1st). I'm still not sure I believe it: Sun hasn't closed the door on open sourcing Java.
on Mar 31, 2004
It's been a while since I last blogged. Besides being busy in my regular job, I got sick and also had to finish this article about Reflection on Tiger. Well, I must say I am enjoying the new project I am working on, since I am being able to have almost full control about everything - except the deadline, but that's acceptable :-D Since the customer is really interested in achieving a quality...
on Mar 19, 2004


Aspect-Oriented programming gives me a bit of the heebie jeebies, I have to admit. The longer I've programmed, the more I've come to value clarity over flexibility -- not that they're necessarily in conflict, but if there's even a hint that they are, I come down on the side of clarity every time. As I write new code, I tend to find myself obsessively asking: "How clearly will this code state...
on Mar 31, 2004
Maybe your mother knows more about software development than you ever imagined. Perhaps the advice she gave you before that fateful blind date--with that special someone your friends convinced you was The One For You--works for software development as well as dating. The assumption here is that you are crafting something that someone else will be using, and it works the same whether you're...
on Mar 19, 2004

Extreme Programming

I know this subject has been talked about practically to death, but from what I have read, there's an assumption about Pair Programming that I believe... no, I know is Just Plain Wrong. The assumption is this: Paired Programming is a Choice. In other words, most people seem to believe that whether you participate and thrive in a paired programming environment is a personal choice. And the sub...
on Mar 30, 2004


I know it's been a while since I've posted. But I've been busy. With, um, you know, stuff! Writing stuff. Coding stuff. Drawing stuff. I'm especially interested in drawing stuff. In particular I've noticed a growing interest in SVG and vector displays. I'm personally a fan of vector formats since it makes a great base for interesting drawings in Photoshop, but I've started to discover other uses...
on Mar 30, 2004
I've been spending time in India lately, where my pal Brian Behlendorf and I recently met a local open source activist, Niyam Bhusan (more on Niyam another day). We got to talking about the origins of Java and being Niyam he decided to spend a few hours researching on the web. He sent me this link to a long but fun to read piece about the early days of Java (before Duke, before Oak...REALLY...
on Mar 25, 2004


Following up on my earlier entry on Java for PalmOS Devices, Mel Seyle wrote me to ask: Does this mean that I can now directly download MIDlets to my Palm Tungsten and run them? I used to have to convert my Java programs to Palm PRC files before uploading them on my Palm Vx to run under the KVM. I don't have a Java-enabled Tungsten myself, but in preparing a follow-up to my earlier entry (Java...
on Mar 26, 2004

Web Services and XML

IBM and BEA have just released a joint white paper on BPELJ, a combination of BPEL and the Java programming language: BPELJ: BPEL for Java technology This may be a really good idea, or it may be the worst mismash since JSP was introduced. I'm a fan of BPEL (Business Process Definition Language), and I really like the process definition features in WebLogic Workshop 8.1, but I'm not so sure...
on Mar 25, 2004


While it is no shocker, Sun CEO Scott McNealy has made his decision very public, Java will not be open sourced. If you follow the link (above) you can see the report on his speech on Government Computer News. I haven't found the text of the whole speech online, so I'll only talk about what was reported there and elsewhere. While ESR's comparison to Python and Perl just shows he doesn't...
on Mar 24, 2004
For passionate Java developers, the network is the computer. However Java, and in particular its runtime environment, require a highly sophisticated operating system on which to run. Enter Linux; you would be hard pressed to find any system with more features. So, how does Linux increase the power of Java? First let’s look at what Linux represents; it is a free, heterogeneous, network-...
on Mar 13, 2004


I was lucky enough to spend all of last week at Software Development Expo West (SD West) in Santa Clara, California. I usually don't have the luxury of devoting so much time to a "non-essential" activity, but the stars just happened to align fortuitously. My wife is expecting our second child soon and I'd scheduled myself to be voluntarily unemployed at this time anyway. I can...
on Mar 22, 2004
JSR-241: The Groovy Programming Language proposes the standardization of a new programming language for the Java Platform
on Mar 16, 2004
So, I've posted a brief list of significant things that the technology business really ought to get working on. I wrote this list up on the plane after reading several articles about how the technology business was in the doldrums, more or less arguing that we already had pretty much everything we need. The idea is so laughable... it reminds one of that infamous 1899 USPTO quote, "everything that...
on Mar 12, 2004


The Chinese Government is insisting that wi-fi chipmakers must bundle a properiatary encryption software not only to make the chips in China but also to be able to sell units made of these chips to the Chinese market. This piece of software has not undergone public scrutiny and select companies within China have special access to it. See This reeks...
on Mar 19, 2004