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Open Source

Recently I've been trying to get various open source applications running on Solaris on x86 machines. These were mostly GNOME applications, but some of them were dependant upon underlying libraries that come from the Linux world. I've been having some trouble with some of these software distributions because the author(s) have only ever been concerned with GNOME and Linux. I'm old enough to...
on Apr 28, 2004
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
CNet's news.com is reporting today that IBM is urging Sun to make Java open-source. The article sources an open letter from Rod Smith, IBM's vice president of emerging technology, to Rob Gingell, a Vice President and Sun Fellow at Sun — the letter has been publicly posted here. In it, Smith replies to comments from Sun's Simon Phipps, who earlier in the month asked why IBM hadn't open-...
on Feb 26, 2004
Whitespace is a language whose syntax comprises only the whitespace characters space, tab, and linefeed.
on Feb 8, 2004
The best software engineers I know make writing code the central part of their day. Like playing a sport or a musical instrument, writing software requires first that you show up. While the three of us were having coffee, a friend of mine once asked Dain Sundstrom how long it would take to become a really good Java developer. Dain's answer was "six hours . . . every single day." You'd be amazed...
on Jan 27, 2004
It doesn't make sense to clutter the action API with accessor methods for these values in a class meant to abstract actions from the framework, so I just have a generic accessor for the mdbean. Then the classes that need it can just pull the values directly out of the MDBean. If there was a way to synch the internal values with the IDE, I'd be set. What I couldn't figure out before was how IoC...
on Jan 27, 2004
Today, residents of Iowa will participate in the state's causas, the first in this election. They will cast their vote for the Democratic party's presidential nominee. The Iowa caucus draws a lot of national attention because it is the first test for the candidates, and establishes the elections early leaders...and losers. After the votes are tallied, we'll see the field of prospects,...
on Jan 18, 2004
Erik Hatcher writes Velocity: Fast Track to Templating -- a nice and quick introduction to the Apache Group's Velocity Templating engine.
on Dec 16, 2003
Terence Parr, creator of ANTLR, writes on why Enforcing Model-View Separation in Template Engines is a Good Thing(tm). Ter created an implemention expressing this separation, StringTemplate Template Engine, which he's used to build a number of web sites, including jGuru.
on Nov 18, 2003
Terence Parr, creator of ANTLR, wrote an excellent essay on why humans should not have to grok XML.
on Nov 18, 2003
I have to admit that over the past couple of years I've lost my some of my enthusiasm for the IT industry. It seemed like the only thing that people cared about was making lots of money and becoming the next Bill Gates. Fortunately, I was saved here at ApacheCon in Las Vegas. I rediscovered my religion, programming. For the past 36 hours I've been working along side some of the smartest...
on Nov 17, 2003
I've found I want to reuse code from almost every project I've ever worked on. Plus other people treat my code as library code years longer than I thought possible. So when I create Java code, I produce reusable .jars of code. Structuring the project correctly at the beginning to help reuse seems to be important, but isn't without cost. I have settled on one way, but am not convinced it's the...
on Sep 25, 2003
I plan to use autoboxing in a project, so I'm responding to Erb Cooper's damning blog, "The Terror That Is Autoboxing." I haven't read the spec yet -- Only JCP members have had the chance. I think we should reserve judgment at least until we can see what the JSR expert group has come up with. Under the eye-catching headline, Erb's complaint is that autoboxing could create a lot of objects for no...
on Sep 18, 2003
So far, so good. First of all, traffic on the Geronimo-dev list has been incredible. Literally hundreds of developers have launched themselves into the Geronimo-dev mailing lists. Each week there are nearly five hundred posts to the dev list. Andy Oliver stirred up some trouble for us by calling up HONOR, an American Indian advocacy group located right here in Minneapolis. I'm currently...
on Sep 4, 2003
Several years ago I was working on a system for modelling and simulating social pressure. The idea was that actions have repercussions and that I could build dynamic ecosystems staffed with characters of differing social power. The pressure system would stimulate social interaction between criminals, the wealthy corporate elite, impoverished citizens and various authorities in a cyberpunk RPG...
on Aug 20, 2003
Logic is the foundation of philosophy. It's also the foundation of Computer Science. I think it's interesting how some in the IT industry try to brand IT as a purely pragmatic field, in that charming American "we don't trust academics" sort of way. But in reality, pragmatics seems to play a minor role in developer's minds. I've seen some pretty wild ideas just looking for a practical use. Many...
on Aug 9, 2003
In his recent posting on java.net Alan Williamson asks how open source software can ever be profitable. I believe his thinking confuses two different issues - how software is developed and how it is deployed. In some contexts they are the same thing, but in a growing number they are completely different. In the difference lays the answer. I believe the best way to understand open source is as a...
on Jul 29, 2003
On July 24, Larry Lessig gave a talk at the Sun CTO All-Hands meeting. He gave a variant of his usual talk which is about the fact that creativity includes building on the work of others and that therefore intellectual property owners, like real property owners, should enjoy only a limited set of rights
on Jul 28, 2003
Just read Clay Shirky's talk, A Group Is Its Own Worst Enemy". It reminded me of something else I've read. There's an insane theologian named Walter Wink who wrote a series of books called the "Powers Triology", in which he essentially equates demon possession to the organizational inertia of large groups. It's a very weird idea, and in many respects, Wink is just nuts. But he's one of those...
on Jul 25, 2003