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Using another painter's brushes

Posted by simongbrown on September 2, 2003 at 2:40 PM PDT

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 open source bits and pieces. However, now that the project is about to move up a gear, the toolset is about to change.

Like many large clients, our new environment is going to be locked down for security and management reasons. For example, policies on our XP workstations permit very little in the way of configuration, although thankfully we (developers) are getting local admin privileges. However, just because we will be able to install software doesn't mean that we'll be allowed to install it. Open source is one particular area in which there is still ongoing controversy. In addition to this, the development environment has been defined outside of the immediate group of architects and developers. Without being specific, all I can say is that it's not my choice. ;-)

This brings me on to the point of this entry. How many of you frequently get a choice in your development environment? Also, do you find that open source is still controversial? Having been involved in mentoring a team of new Java developers, I totally understand the thoughts around a standard development environment. Using a mixed environment can be a pain, but can it work? Not using your favourite development tool is something that we have to live with, but would you use somebody else's brushes?

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