doing TODAY and not getting caught in the HYPE of tomorrow

Alan Williamson

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Top Stories by Alan Williamson

Over the last few months I have made more than a passing reference to the fact that I personally feel that, in its present state, Java doesn't stand much chance on the desktop against the march of Microsoft's WinForm technology from the .NET Framework. A view, I have discovered, shared by many of you. Before I go on, let me clarify my position here so we are all on the same page. The frameworks currently available to the Java developer from the standard JDK, of course, are AWT and Swing. Naturally we are not talking about other client-side technologies, such as SWT, Thinlets, and Droplets to name a few, but more on them later. The less said about AWT the better. It doesn't even stand up to the functionality of an HTML page with a basic FORM embedded in it. But we were told not to despair, Sun promised a much better technology was in the works. We were then presente... (more)

What Does it All Mean?

Wireless - what a stupid word. When all's said and done, what does it really mean? Is it just another word the computing industry has hijacked for its own ill-gotten gains? After some searching around I came up with a number of definitions for the infamous word: 1. To communicate (a message) or communicate with (someone) by radio telephone or telegraph 2. Without, or operating, transmitted, or the like without, wires; a wireless message I guess that sort of fits into where the word is being deployed. That makes me feel a lot better. But what does it really mean? What does it mean ... (more)

Open Source Java? - Why on Earth Would I Want That?

Alan Williamson's Blog (August 17, 2006) - This week at LinuxWorld Laurie Tolson gave reporters an update on the planned release of Java and its associated tools under an open source license.  By the end of the year, javac and the hot spot compiler will be released.  The precise license details haven't yet been announced yet - that is the part of the equation they are wrestling with the most since there are components within the JDK that aren't theirs to open source.  Politics and licenses aside, let us look at what this means for the humble Java developer, the troops in the tren... (more)

Bye Bye Command Line; Amazon Releases Its AWS Web Console

Alan Wiliamson's Blog Finally, after years of providing just a command line interface to their web services, Amazon has released a web based management console. Has it been worth the wait? In a nutshell, yes. We knew this day was coming, and 8th of January was that day. Built using Yahoo's YUI framework, using JSP at the backend, Amazon's engineers have delivered a very rich, functional and darn right stunning looking console. It begs you to want to use it. Initial Tour The first you notice instantly is how clean everything is laid out, choice of colours and controls just flow beaut... (more)

POP Goes the Server

In our last column we addressed one of the most commonly asked questions regarding the sending of e-mail from within a Java applet or application. This was achieved using the SMTP protocol, and by the end of the article a fully functional SMTP class was constructed. Before we continue the development of our column project, Informer, I thought it would be a good idea to complete the e-mail service by presenting the other half of the equation: picking up mail from a mailbox. This article will concentrate on building a class that can be used to interrogate a POP3 mailbox. If you re... (more)