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Carry That Weight

Posted by editor on August 29, 2005 at 6:51 AM PDT

What does "active in java.net projects" mean anyways?

The results of the current java.net poll are kind of interesting. Asked "How active are you in java.net projects?", the current results show 68% saying they're not involved in projects. That it's the highest response isn't too surprising -- coding and reporting bugs is work -- but the overall distribution is not what I expected when I wrote the poll. For example, the current #2 choice is "Project Owner". With a finite number of projects (over 2,100 at last count), there is a fairly limited number of people who could choose this option.

I think what I expected was more of a classic "pyramid"-type distribution, with a small number of project owners, a larger number of coders (i.e., people who contribute code, but don't actually own the project), and still-larger numbers of participants who contribute not with code but with feedback (bug reports and general discussion). Yet so far, only a few report being code contributors and bug reporters.

It's still early, with less than 200 votes cast, so the results may change, but it still gives you some things to chew on. Are many projects contributed to only by their owners? Are people pulling down code and not discussing it or filing bug reports on it?

To this point, there were a couple of talkbacks to the poll choices. pdfalcon1 writes:

Hey, listen. I read your sites, I download stuff, I install it and experiment sometimes and I use what I can see works well in our systems. That's a contribution, isn't it?

Interesting. I didn't think to include just downloading as an option, and on further reflection, I probably still wouldn't. The question is phrased as "How active are you in java.net projects" [emphasis mine], and I don't know if downloading and using code is really a form of activity in the project.

pdfalcon1 says "That's a contribution, isn't it?" No offense, but I don't think it is. If you're not offering feedback, in the form of bug reports, enhancement requests, or even a simple "hey, this works great for me" on the message board, then I don't see what's being conrtributed other than a tick on the download counter.

Is there anything wrong with that? Not at all -- project owners want their stuff to be used. But I don't see it as activity in the project. So I think "not active" is the proper poll option in that case.

Feel free to follow up in the comments, either on this blog or in the poll dicsussion.


AJAX tops today's Weblogs.
In

AJAX Solutions Online : A demo is better than 1000 words, Greg Murray writes:
"The BluePrints Solutions Catalog has been updated this week. In it are many solutions on AJAX that cover show the programming model we are proposing for AJAX applications that run on the Java Enterprise Edition platform."

Roger Brinkley reminds us of JavaHelp's popularity in When 12% is really greater than 50%:
"The 2005 WritersUA Skills and Technologies Survey shows JavaHelp as valuable or invaluable to 12% of the respondents. But a careful look shows that the 12% is actually over 50% of the java repondents."

Waiting for C# to replace Java? Keep waiting. In
C# The saga continues and a testing competition, Calvin Austin writes
"I read a report that contained the data point that C# only has 15% marketshare in the enterprise. Also news on a testing competition."


In this week's Spotlight, we have a tool to help manage your java.net project:
the Logger project offers java.net project owners access to the Apache log files for their projects. The service works by adding specially-named users as observers to your project. For example, adding weekly_logger will cause a weekly log file to be sent to the project owner. You can also receive stats reports that provide a simple HTML overview of which files are being accessed, as seen in this example.


In Also in
Java Today
,

support in the Java language for multilingual and multicountry environments is strong, but it's not foolproof. If you're not careful, mistaken assumptions in three key areas can make their way into your code and cause it to be U.S.-centric. The article Internationalization Road Hazards identifies these internationalization gotchas and gives you some techniques to help your applications become more usable across the globe.

"How many hundreds of J2EE-EJB web applications have been written that capture information from a web page and store it in a database? What really keeps developers awake at night is trying to write and maintain the complex business logic in their applications. This is a problem not only for new applications, but increasingly, for long-lived, business-critical apps whose internal logic needs to change frequently, often at very short notice." In Using Drools in Your Enterprise Java Application, Paul Browne argues for using a rule-engine as a business logic framework, in between your application's presentation and persistence frameworks.


In Projects and
Communities
,
Monday is the last day for commercial Jini licensees to vote on the Porter Proposals, Part 2. The proposed changes are all security-related, touching on Jini activation, JERI, and trust verifiers. Proposals that pass this vote will be presented to individual licensees for approval in a Jini Community Decision Process (JDP) vote.

The most recent Java Tools Community Newsletter announces the graduation of JDBAdmin from the community's incubator. This project describes itself as a web application to "browse database information and content using the mechanisms allowed by its JDBC driver", in the fashion of phpmyadmin, phporacleadmin, etc.


In today's Forums,
sameer_t kicks off a discussion on StAX parsing performance
StAX 1.0 White Paper: Streaming API's for XML Parsers JSR-173 introduces new Streaming API's for XML (StAX) which is a standardized Java based API for pull-parsing XML developed though the community process. This document describes the Sun Java System Streaming XML Parser (SJSSXP) which is a freely available implementation of JSR-173 and which discusses some of its performance characteristics. Any feedback or comments can be posted to this thread.

johnreynolds talks about his line of reasoning
:
"Where 'standards' compete, like JSF and Tapestry, my business brain is going to have to go with the "Sun" standard... but only because it has more tool support, and it's 'good enough'. That's what it really boils down to: Which standard provides the 'better' solution. 'Better' includes ease of development, ease of learning, and ease of long-term maintenance."


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What does "active in java.net projects" mean anyways?