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You Had Time

Posted by editor on March 20, 2009 at 9:27 AM PDT


How are you spending the downturn?

I've been talking with different people recently about the nature of the economic downturn. In my physical location, it's pretty bad: the state of Michigan has the highest unemployment in the U.S., thanks to its over-dependence on the collapsing auto industry. But as a work-from-home techie, that doesn't really affect me. And despite a lot of challenges in our industry -- seeing really good people on IM with status "unemployed" -- it doesn't seem like tech is going through quite the same wrenching meltdown. Even where it's bad, it doesn't seem as bad as the recession that ended the dot-com boom of the 90s. There's a sense that in some quarters that, if you can manage it, this is the ideal time to build new stuff and be in place for the eventual recovery.

For example, the growth in mobile is impossible to ignore. Recession or not, nobody's going to let Apple have the final word on cool phones, which is why we're seeing so much new work in this field. In Java, we've got LWUIT to make old phones look new, and JavaFX Mobile gives us an opportunity to make a clean start with a new, media-rich mobile platform.

You have to figure that some developers with more time on their hands than they'd like are using it on open-source projects. It's a good way to keep busy, to learn new things, and to have something to talk about at your next interview.

And, apropos of the idea of coding in different environments than you were last year, the latest java.net Poll asks "Where do you write the most code?" Cast your vote on the front page, then visit the results page for current tallies and discussion.


In Java Today,
after a long development, JSR 282, the Real Time Specification for Java 1.1, is in Early Draft Review. This JSR addresses "loose ends from JSR-1 that are too large to be incorporated in a minor revision, but small enough to be specified and implemented relatively easily. This is an early step in the evolution of the RTSJ. Other enhancements are needed, but this incremental approach will give the community access to needed improvements more quickly than a more comprehensive JSR." The early draft review ends on May 1.

Because of the breadth and depth of Dr. Masood Mortazavi's knowledge and interests, as evidenced on his popular blogs.sun.com blog, On the Margins, his SDN Meet the Engineer interview appears in two parts. Part 1 explored his thoughts on technology, virtual reality, the nature of open-source movements, and more. Part 2 explores his work as a Java developer and manager of a team of senior database engineers.

The latest edition, issue 193, of the JavaTools Community Newsletter is out, with information about tool talks at JavaOne (and a request to add yours to the list, if you've been approved), tool-related news from around the web, the usual project and graduation announcements, and a Tool Tip on debugging test cases with Maven.


Having seemingly wrapped up his JRuby-on-Rails-on-GlassFish series, Arun Gupta turns to embedded GlassFish in today's Weblogs. In TOTD #75: Getting Started with Grails using GlassFish v3 Embedded, he writes, "basically, I wanted to setup a demo environment for Grails and GlassFish v3 Prelude on my machine and so decided to document the steps along the process. More detailed steps with explanation are available on GlassFish/Grails Getting Started Wiki."

Marina Sum has the latest on The .NET Fedlet From OpenSSO. "See a recent posting by OpenSSO engineer Giuseppe Gennaro on the .NET Fedlet, which enables federation among .NET applications through Security Assertion Markup Language (SAML) 2.0."

Finally, in EJB Almanac, Manfred Riem reports that "the beginning of the EJB Almanac is here!"


In today's Forums, Fabian Ritzmann offers some webservice options in
Re: Ignoring the WS-Policy. "You could create a WSDL without policies and use that to configure your service and point the client at the WSDL with policies at a different location. The other option would be to use plain JAX-WS instead of Metro."

Kristian Rink is looking for persistence recommendations for EJB apps. "In an EJB application I need to utilize SQL backend persistence in a way that allows for retrieving data in a pretty "plain" way - either returning Map data if just one table row has been SELECTed, or List> if more than one table row has been SELECTed, with the column names in the corresponding table being keys of the Map and the content of the corresponding cells in this row/cell. This kind of data access should happen from within a stateless session bean exposing something DAO'ish to the rest of the application structure. There are three technologies in question for me to choose from in order to solve this issue..."

davjoh asks
Will a MIDP2 packaged class library run on a MIDP1 phone? "Slightly random question, but will a MIDP2 packaged class library run on a MIDP1 phone? Basically, I'm creating a class library which ideally I'd like to reuse in both MIDP1 and MIDP2 applications. But I'd rather not have to create 2 separate compatible class libraries if you get my meaning. So in my library I would have a runtime check for what platform I'm running, then avoid the classes that are not compatible (i.e. the MIDP2 classes that aren't implemented in MIDP1 and therefore won't run in MIDP1)."

Finally, we're waiting for someone to reply "Flying Saucer!" to tokajac's question on
How to convert HTML to PDF? "I'm developing Tomcat/Struts application. I want to convert, for example, http://www.google.com to PDF. I found iText solutions, but i still haven't made them to work. Any experience with this? Any other suggestion?"


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How are you spending the downturn?