Messing about with blogger

Was messing about with the blogger template a little. The banner at the top now shows my wee multi display setup in the office based on this original image:

I think it's a bit over-cropped... will probably tweak it some more when I'm bored :)

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Google Reader tracks funky hours...

Ah... the trends feature in Google Reader continues to remind me that I really must try harder to live in the times of day that most people regard as "normal":

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Never underestimate the power of pictures

Suppose I whimsically decided to call my next little project something like "itikka". If you're the curious sort, you might wonder where that name comes from, and punch it into google to see what gives. Go on... give it a try... I'll wait until you come back...

With a bit of diligence (mainly clicking a few of those result links), you might have figured it out. OK.. try it again, but this time use Google Image Search. Instantly, you see: lots of pictures of insects (bugs). My next project might be a bug database or a bug finding tool, or something of that ilk. It may or may not be translated into Finish though ;)

Pictures are powerful.

P.s. I claim dibs on using this name for an application that involves bugs in any way. Even one that has some...

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It's only polite to turn up for your BOF...

Just taking 5 minutes from wandering around at the JavaOne conference. Pulled myself out of the (very cool) battle bot arena in the afterdark party to go see Fabiano Cruz and Marcelo Mayworm talk about creating an OSGi based framework for Swing applications (BOF-3487). I was particularly interested in this BOF, because we've been thinking about OSGi in my group at work, and we're developing a very large and modular Swing application.

Unfortunately, the speakers didn't turn up. Barring major catastrophe, that's just terribly rude. Speakers get a full free pass for the conference, and the least they can do in return is actually show up for their own sessions. Tsk ;) Needless to say, that was the only session evaluation I've filled out so far that's had many marks to the right of the center divide...

More blogging on the conference to come... (I know... I've been remiss in blogging while here. I always forget how hectic things are. But I've got a bunch of stuff "buffered up"). Planning to grab a bite to eat and then go see my good friends (and collegues) Alex Ruiz and Yvonne Price talk about their cool testing framework, FEST at BOF-3478.

Update: Turns out this was an administrative error at JavaOne. The session had been canceled by the speakers, but the conference organizers forgot to remove it from the schedule. Ah well... all is forgiven ;)

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How pants relate to nine year old code

Rediscovered a heap of Java code I wrote 9 years ago the other day. Good grief - the passage of time is really apparent when you go surfing through code you haven't seen for such a long time...

One of the little things I found distracting while surfing through the code was due to a language other than Java... I see that back then, I was still spelling in British English - dialogue instead of dialog, initialise instead of initialize. For example: AgentConfigDialogue.java .

British English spellings for many words look strangely wrong to me now when I see them. I got into the habit of spelling things the American way years before I came to live here, mainly because the coding I do at work requires me to use American English.

I suppose my roots are still there, since I do still seem to trip up people in the USA with occasional random Britishness (like saying I'll meet someone at "half two"). And I never probably will get comfortable with the "restroom" or the "washroom". Or with "pants" for that matter :)

This is a "pre-recorded" blog entry. More JavaOne stuff soon...

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Why Subversion is better than CVS for Java developers

Over on the JDeveloper forum, John Stegeman responds to a question about whether CVS or Subversion is better for Java development:

... "Subversion," especially if you are using ADF business components. My reason for saying this is that we initially tried CVS [in an environment where] the network was not the most reliable. We had some problems where the network would drop in the middle of the commit (not a JDev/CVS problem), and half of the changes would be committed to the repository, and half of them were not. In the case of the Business Components, having the XML files and Java source files out of synch was a major major problem. This particular problem is one that Subversion solves; with Subversion, either the whole commit happens or none of it happens, just like a good database.

He makes a very good point. Atomic commits are one serious advantage Subversion has over CVS. In Java applications, where you tend to have a lot of files (as opposed to C where a lot of logic is concentrated into a smaller number of source files), it's vitally important that all of your changes are submitted along with each other.

Another big advantage of Subversion compared to CVS is directory versioning. In Subversion, directories have versions, just like files. The history of a directory is tracked over time. In the Java world, we like to move stuff around a lot (let's refer to it as "refactoring", although that word has additional implications). It's nice to use a version control system that does a good job of handling complex move operations over time without resetting element history.

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JavaOne 2007: This year's Bag-o-Stuff

Went down to Moscone today to register for the conference. Blimey, it's hot! Anyway, here are the contents of this year's backpack:

You can already start playing "spot the Java geek" on the streets of San Francisco :)

I like the fold-out conference schedule. Not sure if they had that last year and I just missed it, but it sure will come in handy. I've not been able to figure out what the mysterious white rubbery "holdzalot" thing from SAP is for... Apparently, you should move it frequently when it's on natural wood surfaces. I'll remember to do that. If I ever figure out what it is.

More (unexciting) photos in my JavaOne 2007 Album...

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San Francisco Prepares for JavaOne 2007

For the first time ever, I'm planning to make like a tourist and actually use my camera this year at JavaOne... Was wandering around town today in search of a decent coffee and I happened to pass by the Moscone center, so I took a few of pictures of the JavaOne signage at the Moscone Center. Quiet before the storm... :)

My JavaOne 2007 Album on Picasa has more. You can even subscribe to the RSS feed...

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Sessions for JavaOne

The last few months at work have been packed. We've been working to get a preview release of the next version of JDeveloper out to customers in time for JavaOne. Since we're planning to cut the final build within the next few days, some of the pressure will be off next week, and I can hopefully enjoy a few interesting technical sessions and BOFs at the conference.

I was fortunate enough to have the opportunity to speak at the conference for three years in a row, but it's a bit of a relief not to be speaking at JavaOne this year. Speaking at the conference is great fun, and I hope to do it again in the future. But this year, it will be nice just to be an attendee for a change and not be stressing out about speaking the whole time...

Here's the list I've signed up for so far - certainly won't make all of them, but I'll do my very best ;)


TS-1742 - Cool Things You Can Do with the Groovy Dynamic Language
TS-3942 - JSR 269: The Swing Application Framework
TS-2294 - Closures for the Java Programming Language
TS-2800 - OpenJDK Project Report
BOF-2400 - Modularity in the Next-Generation Java Platform, Standard Edition (Java SE): JSR 227 and JSR 294
BOF-3349 - Advanced Swing Drag-and-Drop


TS-9555 - Quick and Easy Profiling with Integrated Tools
TS-2689 - Effective Java Reloaded: This Time It's for Real
TS-6475 - Fast, Beautiful, Easy: Pick Three -- Building Web User Interfaces in the Java Programming Language with Google Web Toolkit
TS-3548 - Extreme GUI Makeover 2007
TS-2388 - Effective Concurrency for the Java Platform
BOF-9587 - Pimp My Java Application: Applying Static Analysis Tools to Boost Java Code Quality
BOF-3603 - Build Real-World Applications by Usnig Swing and JIDE


TS-2401 - Java Language Modularity with Superpackages
TS-1419 - Best OSGi Practices
TS-3316 - Why Spaghetti Is Not Tasty: Architecting Full-Scale Swing Apps
TS-2318 - JSR 277: Java Module System
TS-6889 - Java Technology-Powered Microsoft Ajax
BOF-3487 - @Plugin World: Creating Your Own Lightweight OSGi-Based Framework for Building and Managing Pluggable Swing Applicatinos
BOF-3478 - Easy Test-Driven GUI Development


TS-3414 - Bringing Life to Swing Desktop Applications
TS-3631 - Writing Testable Desktop UIs
TS-3165 - Filthy-Rich Clients: Talk Dirty to Me
TS-3833 - Debugging and Optimizing Swing Applications

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Google Code Prettify

Up till now, I've been using Java2HTML to generate syntax highlighted Java code snippets for my blog. It's useful, but a little cumbersome to have to use a separate application and trim the HTML it generates for each snippet. The HTML it generates is also unavoidably gnarly, which makes tweaking the code after it has been published tedious.

google-code-prettify solves this problem in a neat way - syntax highlighting is performed on the code using JavaScript in the browser. It seems to work pretty well:

 * Hi!
final class HelloWorld {
  // The usual boring example
  public static void main( String[] args ) {
    System.out.println( "Hello Prettified World!" );

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