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Games

Ever get that feeling? The glitch in the Matrix? The feeling of Deja-vu that is just so strong you can't shake it from the front of your brain? After finishing the new book, The Masters of Doom, the story of how John Romero and John Carmack (Surgeon John and Engine John) started id Software, defined the First Person Shooter (FPS) and changed the game industry forever, I get the feeling that...
on Aug 1, 2003
[I was going to reply to Chris's excellent weblog in the talkback section, but I started rambling and it touched on some other thoughts I've had, so I decided to ramble here instead... Keep in mind that I'm only half-wearing my Sun cap right now (kind of like one of those green and brown, half A's, half Giants caps that were popular in the '89 Series), so I'm not speaking entirely on behalf of...
on Jul 28, 2003

Business

I have a big black phone with lots of buttons on my desk. I have a very small silver phone that I carry around with me all the times. I use each of these phones on a daily basis. Although they perform the same basic function (allow me to call other people and to receive calls), and they cost roughly the same, they are quite different in a number of ways. Some of those differences make sense...
on Jul 31, 2003
In spite of all of the abstract tech talk and demo code and articles I've been involved with over the years while advocating Java technology, at the end of the day any technology, Java included, is only useful when somebody finds something interesting to do with it. To that end, I enjoyed Jack Shirazi's recent blog entry on Java Case Studies and the J2ME stats URLs posted in response by...
on Jul 30, 2003
Before I get much further in my Blog, I just want to make one thing perfectly clear: I love servers. Or more accurately, I love having my applications and data on servers, and then I like to just forget about those servers. I want them to be someone else’s concern. I simply want my applications and my data to be wherever I need them. I want them to be backed up without my thinking about it....
on Jul 30, 2003
I hear that Macromedia Flash is going to alleviate the burden of having programmers. I’ve been hearing for the past two decades about how this or that new software development system was going to allow business users or designers to create software, and therefore companies wouldn’t have to employ expensive programmers. As a further benefit, IT would be much more responsive because users would...
on Jul 29, 2003
After the debacle around the infamous ServerSide report, you could be forgiven for treating all benchmarks and performance comparisons with a pinch of a salt. All the vendors cited in that exercise were very quick to distant themselves from the whole escapade and tout they would only be interested in official benchmarks. One such body that does attempt to define a standard is the Standard...
on Jul 29, 2003
Open-Source is something that is never far from the headlines. It is something that I have been giving a lot of thought to as of late. I haven't resolved my views on the whole movement yet and at the moment, I am purely in a data-collection phase. The one thing that I have been trying to resolve is the whole notion of food-on-the-table, and who actually puts it there. We all have to eat and...
on Jul 28, 2003
I love looking through case studies. They can teach you so much about what to do, what not to do, what is in vogue, etc. All those useful design patterns came from analyzing lots of case studies and seeing what worked; and sometimes, more importantly, what didn't work. So this year I decided to start listing case studies when I find them. And a great place to start is JavaOne, where lots of the...
on Jul 24, 2003

Community

The Austin JUG held its July meeting two days ago. The topic was "JavaOne 2003 Recap." We had a great turnout (close to 100 people crammed into our meeting location) and the level of interest was high. Five members who attended JavaOne gave a short talk on their experience at the conference and participated in the discussion panel that ensued. What I particularly enjoyed was how...
on Jul 31, 2003
I took another look at SwingSightings recently, and something struck me -- most of the user interfaces (UIs) for the Swing applications are not very good. I'm not naming names and I'm not saying everything is bad (there are in fact some pretty cool apps up there). What I am saying is that on a whole they are not so great. Since we love Java, we can see the potential in these applications. We can...
on Jul 30, 2003
I came across an interesting blog entry today (see URL reference) that refers to a Sun Java tech tip for generating custom taglets. The example shows linking to Javapedia page for examples. This is slick and deserves some attention, I think. Having javadoc web pages point to examples that are community created is great. In fact, I like this idea so much that I think I'll borrow it for the...
on Jul 25, 2003

Tools

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

Performance

The JavaPerformanceTuning.com July newsletter was published. And naturally I wouldn't leave you ignorant of that highly important fact. We list all the latest Java performance related news and articles The roundup of performance discussions over the last month. Kirk covers tokenizing, result set processing, data structures, a fascinating discussion on OutputStream.write blocking, and more....
on Jul 30, 2003

Open Source

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—a set that can be reduced over time as new societal needs are discovered. For example, until...
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

J2SE

Anecdotal evidence has been brewing for a while that the Java 3D API has been in a state of decay. Today's events seem to resolve the situation, with a much more promising future for 3D graphics in java than when we woke up this morning, even if that future doesn't seem to include Java3D itself. Much speculation about Java3D has come from developers on Mac OS X, which has never enjoyed a...
on Jul 28, 2003
Return with me, if you will, to the early days of Java. It was hot. People started using it when it was alpha; by beta, there was at least one book out, Netscape supported it, and people were already using it on their web sites. Clearly, the great attraction of Java at the time was the ability to make your web pages actually do something. But Java had other attractions as a language. For me...
on Jul 21, 2003

Web Services and XML

The W3C XML Protocol Working Group has published the first working draft of a SOAP Message Transmission Optimization Mechanism or MTOM for short. This specification shows the direction in which the WG is headed to address the handling of attachments for SOAP 1.2 messages. On the wire, a message and its attachments are encapsulated within a MIME multipart/related envelope with the SOAP message as...
on Jul 23, 2003