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Matt is looking for a way to test tag libraries and rather than write a lengthy comment, I thought I'd follow it up here. In the first part of his post, Matt says, ... I've looked briefly at TagUnit, but aren't you just writing JSPs (with custom tags) to test JSPs? In answer to this question, yes, you're exactly rght in saying that you're just writing JSPs. This is the essence of TagUnit, and...
on Oct 7, 2003
While Matt was talking about the Tomcat Service Manager, coincidentally, I was trying to install Tomcat 4 as a service on a Windows 2000 machine yesterday. For various reasons, I didn't want to install Tomcat via the .exe and therefore had to hunt around for the command line that installs the NT service. For (my) future reference, here it is, split over several lines for readability. set...
on Sep 26, 2003


I was putting TrackBack support into Pebble the other day and the found that the technical details of a TrackBack involve sending a HTTP POST request to the remote server. I've implemented HTTP POSTs before using the classes in the package, but rather than write all this code again, I thought that I'd take a look at Jakarta Commons HttpClient. What can I say ... this is another top...
on Oct 6, 2003
I read Bill Venner's interview with James Gosling, "Failure and Exceptions," and with Anders Hejlsberg, "The Trouble with Checked Exceptions," and was a little surprised. I thought exceptions would be in .Net since .Net has taken so many other features from Java. I've never found checked exception clauses to be much of a burden. It's one of my favorite features of Java. Anyway, given all the...
on Oct 6, 2003
I received an email today asking about my use of the glass pane. It seems this fellow wants to handle right clicks on any component in each screen. A logical request. In most cases your right clicks are not limited to a single component, yet to receive the events required to show popups you have to add a listener to each component! Not enjoyable. To get around this we can use a glass pane....
on Oct 3, 2003


There's been a lot of talk lately about how Tiger (J2SE 1.5) is going to make Java easier to develop with, bringing it to the masses (or as Sun call it, to the "corporate developers"). I have no doubt that this promise *will* be fullfilled. My question is: *when* will that happen? I'm not even talking about Tiger's release schedule here - although I'm also afraid it's is a little bit late...
on Oct 5, 2003
One valuable capability of open standards is to let customers decouple application decisions from infrastructure choices. I recently spoke at a technology conference as a part of a panel, and one question from the audience was about which open standards were most important. My response was that there are many important open standards, but that one crucial capability that customers are looking...
on Sep 30, 2003
I commented recently that, while we can each take steps to prevent virus and worm attacks on our computer systems, the biggest threat we actually face is the fact that we have a computer monoculture. Most of the world
on Sep 26, 2003
My company is not really an eXtreme Programming shop, but we are somewhat inspired by it. We are currently doing a project in which some people are involved in pair programming. I recently witnessed an amusing situation involving this practice. The team that works at the other desk in my office found a bug which they could not figure out. They came to the conclusion that it might be in the...
on Sep 23, 2003

Web Services and XML

Phil Howard of Bloor Research presents anargument I've heard more than once recently: "The reason why there is this trend away from pure XML storage is because advanced XML capabilities are being introduced by all the leading relational vendors." As the developers of Object Oriented DBMS discovered, he says, "the truth is that (like it or not) the market will make do with what the relational...
on Oct 4, 2003


A colleague of mine just pointed out that in Richard Monson-Heafel
on Oct 2, 2003
Finally I found time for a technical log here at This time I want to discuss a shortcoming of the EJB specification and how they can be fixed to make the life of EJB developers and application server administrators easier and the deployed applications more robust. Originally the EJB specification assumed that the applications are deployed at startup of the application server and the...
on Sep 30, 2003
XML and SOAP messages may mask the the underlying infrastructure from developers but the data center still needs to be brand aware. There are many conversations on the topic of Java vs. .NET and how Web Services might be the holy grail or glue to bring it all together. Philip Brittan points out some interesting things in his Microsoft and Web Services weblog entry that got me to thinking about...
on Sep 23, 2003
I recently wrote an article, "Create Desktop Applications with Java-Based Web Technologies" for O'Reilly, and I was just pondering some of the feedback I got. (If you're too busy to read the article, basically I write about using a web application in a bundled Tomcat to build a desktop application w/installer). First off, people seem to think that bandwidth is *awfully* cheap nowadays...
on Sep 22, 2003



The September issue of the Java Performance Newsletter was published. Here is the content list. Timers and audio performance How do you synchronize audio and video frames? What is Java's current capability for recording audio samples? Why is clock skew important to audio recording? In this article Scot Mcphee describes what you need to know about timers for recording audio samples from Java. All...
on Oct 1, 2003


Joel Spolsky ("Joel on Software") built his company offices designed for actual programmers and their teams. A radical notion, really. Here's one sample: Put lots of outlets in each office at desk height. No reason to be crawling on the floor with your butt in the air as an invitation to anyone passing by. Also some cool ideas about floor plans to increase everyone's light, etc. Okay, his...
on Sep 28, 2003


It's Friday so I thought I'd do another Swing hack: When I'm doing really complicated Swing layouts I often have trouble figuring out which component on screen matches the one in my code, especially if there are custom widgets or subclasses that look the same as normal ones (like formatted text fields) or that don't have easy to see borders. To assist in debugging these I created a component...
on Sep 26, 2003

Open Source

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 spend most of my time as a Java developer happily writing code without explicitly thinking about encapsulation, polymorphism, and inheritance as underlying principles. I mean those things are given. It would be like noticing wheels are round each time I get in my car. Just like I exploit the roundness of my tires as I tool down the street, I make use of the object-oriented features of Java...
on Sep 24, 2003