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The Ideal Crash

Posted by editor on January 31, 2008 at 8:11 AM PST

Waiting for a new laptop

So I'm sitting here and watching the FedEx shipment tracking page, awaiting a new laptop. The 12" PowerBook that I had with me just last week at Mobile & Embedded Developer Days has died an undignified death. No tears from me: it was due to be replaced this year anyways, suffering from hideously bad wifi reception (I am never buying another metal-encased laptop Mac; plastic just makes more sense), and was powered by a long-in-the-tooth PowerPC G4 CPU that ground to a halt when displaying Flash-based web pages (granted, that's also an indictment of how bad the Flash VM is on PowerPC Macs). Earlier this week, it developed a hard drive rattle, lost the ability to boot, and just after I managed to get some of my wife's files copied over with FireWire, it finally flaked enough that the drive couldn't even be reformatted. I'll eventually spend a weekend afternoon replacing the drive and sending it to a family member, but for now, I do need a travel and "upstairs" computer. And let's face it, we're geeks: who among us doesn't like that new computer smell?

One thing to look forward to is having a dual-core 64-bit Intel CPU, meaning I'll be able to make use of both Apple's JDK 6 DP 8, which is currently 64-bit Intel only (and still not yet final-release quality... sigh), as well as being able to build and run Soy Latte, Landon Fuller's port of the BSD JDK 6 to Mac OS X. On the latter point, I hadn't checked Landon's page in a while, and noticed he's posted some rather ambitious goals for the project:

  • Support for Java 6 Development on Mac OS X 10.4 and 10.5
  • OpenJDK support for Java 7 on Mac OS X
  • On-time release of Java 7 for Mac OS X

Clearly the project is off to a fine start, and a lot of people will be happy if this project gets JDK 7 into Mac-based Java developers' hands at the same time Windows and Linux developers get theirs. But it's a good bet that integrating with the native GUI and sound APIs is going to be a challenge.

Oh, I guess I need to update my bio to say I've now owned ten and a half Macs over the years, and pick partition names consistent with my established scheme.

In Java Today,
another participant in Sun's $1 Million Open Source Community Innovation Awards Program, the GlassFish Awards Program has announced its program details, summarized in an Aquarium post. "Phase Two of the Community Innovation Awards Program is now live.
Check the
Official Announcement,
and our
Earlier Writeups.
Each community has its own set of rules all within an
Overall Program.
The GlassFish program
is described at the
GAP Home Page.
Key points include:
• Awards for Best Bug Reports and for Best Projects • Projects can be based on existing Projects in the GF community or not • Goal is to grow Community in Size, Quality, Innovation, etc. • Submission Start Date is Now, • Submission End Date is June 30th • Results Aug 15th • 175K$ in prizes."

Jim Shingler and Christopher Judd have released the first version of FallME version 0.5. FallME is a Java ME framework based on the popular Spring Framework but designed for mobile devices including those running MIDP. This framework provides an IoC container as well as a RecordStoreTemplate. You can download it and find more details at the project page.

JavaWorld has kicked off a series highlighting useful open-source projects with a look at the Java Desktop Community project Balloon Tips for Java. In Open source Java projects: Balloontip for Java, Jeff Friesen writes, "Bernhard Pauler's open source balloontip project introduces XP-like balloon tips to Swing GUIs. In this first article in the new "Open source Java projects" series, I'll show you how to obtain and install the balloontip software. I'll also walk you through balloontip's example application, explore the balloontip API, and explain where balloon tips are useful in Swing-based Java development."

In today's Weblogs, Tim