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Be Prepared

Posted by editor on March 20, 2006 at 3:26 AM PST

Learn from those who've come before

Our profession's zeal to reinvent itself every few years (months?) has the downside of rendering a lot of old ideas obsolete before their time. Some concepts that would empower Java developers aren't specific to Java and don't necessarily get to us, because they're not always wrapped in a pretty Java package (invite me to a rant on pointer manipulation in media formats sometime). The risk is reinventing the wheel, we're not only duplicating work, but that we might do an inferior job of it.

In today's Weblogs, John Reynolds has an informal interview of Data Structured System Design (DSSD) creator Ken Orr, in John's weblog entry
Ken Orr's advice to Java programmers (and the secrets of writing good software). One of his first pieces of advice is a gem that should be obvious, but is seldom practiced:

John: "Ken... What advice would you give Java programmers?"

Ken Orr: "Don't define yourself as Java programmers."

Ken goes on to discuss what he sees as the lamentable stasis of CASE, and questions the direction of Model Driven Architecture. He also discusses the importance of programming flexibility, of knowing more than one language and approach, as typified by the ideal programming domains of OOP vs. AOP.

Also in today's Weblogs, Alexander Schunk digs into 3D graphics alternatives in
Java3D, JOGL, JDX?
"I recently tried the new JOGL Java OpenGL bindings to see how it differs to the normal C-style OpenGL API. Well, what i learned from this first experience i cannot see any advantages over the C-style OpenGL API."

Tom Ball has an example of The Power of Community:
"Within a couple of days after posting a code fragment, readers posted helpful criticism while another made a great enhancement suggestion for Jackpot."

This week's Spotlight is about the news item OFBiz joins Apache Incubator: The Java Tools Community project Open For Business (OFBiz) has been accepted as an Apache Incubator project. OFBiz provides the building blocks of e-commerce applications, including catalog, customer, order, warehouse and fulfillment management functaionality. A strong community has formed around the OFBiz project, as described in a success story article from 2004.

In Also in
Java Today

JBoss blogger Tom Bayens wonders To BPEL or not to BPEL, that is the question, in a blog that attempts to clarify the difference between BPEL (Business Process Execution Language) and the broader goals of BPM (Business Process Management). "BPEL is a good integration technology, but it is a clumsy way of supporting your business processes. We need an alternative."

"While the [...] synergy between EJB 3.0 and JSF is appealing, it is not yet realized within the Java Enterprise Edition (JEE) 5.0 framework. In plain Java EE, there is still a significant amount of glue code necessary to use both JSF and EJB 3.0 when building a web application--even more, if you add BPM to the recipe for a great application." Want to avoid writing all that glue yourself? Try a seam instead. In JBoss Seam, Thomas Heute looks at how the Seam framework provides inter-framework plumbing and a stateful component model, to make web app development less of a hassle.

In Projects and
the 73rd issue of the JavaTools Community Newsletter seeks feedback on favorite Java SE 5 and EE 5 tools in the tools forum. Along with news from around the web and an Eclipse tutorial "tool tip", it welcomes six new projects to the community.

Registration is now open for NetBeans Software Day, to be held May 15, prior to the opening of JavaOne 2006. The event is free, and the first 400 attendees get a complimentary copy of the soon-to-be-published NetBeans IDE Field Guide.

Today's Forums kick off with the complaint
VerticalLayout support gone:
"VerticalLayout support in my NB 5.0 is gone. I can't use Form Editor to change Layout to VerticalLayout, as used to be. VerticalLayout option in layouts options is gone. How can enable again?"

samflores writes about
Web Services and EJB 3.0:
"I thought the problem was the entity anotations (like @Entity, @Id, etc.) in my entity classes. So I created another simple class (under ws.jar also) anotated as an entity. And one more time the web service worked very well. Conclusion: I believe the web service can't use the entities classes because they're in another .jar file. It's right? I saw somewhere in the web that the "ejbs.jar" portion of the app can see the entities 'cause they're in the lib directory, right? The web services shouldn't see them too? Is there a way to bypass that?"

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Learn from those who've come before