Bens Stuff

Wednesday, January 04, 2006

Why not converge?

Where's my convergence? I want my Apple iPod to make phone calls for me, play video's for me, play J2ME games for me, be WiFi enabled so it can login to my corporate network and check my email on Exchange, take 5MP pictures for me, allow me to IM people and surf the net, and play MP3's all in an iPod-like fit and finish. Why is this so hard? I DO NOT WANT to have an mp3 player, a cell phone, and a 5MP digicam all in my pockets.

Why no, I am not happy to see you because I have all this crap stuck in my pants pockets.

I say this because I'm about to buy a Sony Ericsson W600i walkman phone which almost has everything. It's the closest so far at a decent price anyways. Once Apple figures this out, their record iPod sales from 2005 will pale in comparison.

Motorola's ROKR E1 wasn't that great, but their new ROKR E2 and SLVR phones look decent. But I can't wait until they get released to the US before I get one. My old green-screen, midi-playin v60s just is too old and crap-tastic to wait.

I know some people will say that convergence is a bad thing and that a convergence-type device may be a jack of all trades but a master of none. Well that may be true at first, but manufacturers will get better and hopefully learn from their mistakes. But if they never try, then yeah, convergence is bad. But do you really want to carry around three bulky devices with different interfaces and capabilities, and three exorbitant prices around all the time? I'd rather carry one sleek iPod-ish device that does everything for me.

Thursday, April 07, 2005

Design Patterns

There are a lot of books out there that I need to read. But there are a couple that always seem to make my list but never seem to get bought. I have a nagging need to read some books on design patterns. I've done well enough reading articles on the web, but I need some books now.

The first book is the standard which I believe every good developer has read at some point, Martin Fowler's excellent Patterns of Enterprise Application Architecture. Next is a good book I've skimmed over a couple times, Refactoring to Patterns by Joshua Kerievsky. has a good article written by the authors of Head First Design Patterns.

Next is where to buy these books. You could always try your local Barnes and Nobles if you need it today. Or you could go to which is where I always bought my books in the past. But I found out the other day about which has better prices than both B&N and Amazon.

Patterns of Enterprise Application Architecture -
Head First Design Patterns -
Refactoring to Design Patterns -

Friday, March 11, 2005

some design pattern info

Factory Design Pattern

More patterns

Monday, February 28, 2005

how bout that, unit testing is good for something after all

yeah, so I've been putting off unit testing my code for quite a while. I don't know why, laziness probably. I've always tested it manually using copious logging and having some other eyes look at the code.
But at my new job we HAVE to have unit test written for everything we deploy. It's not a test driven development shop, but unit tests are taken seriously. So after a bit of grumbling (silently of course), I wrote my unit tests. They weren't as hard and painful as I thought it would have been. But you know what, all of my tests except one passed. Well I'll be a son of a son of a sailor (it's what was playing on my mp3 list). One of my unit tests actually uncovered a bug that wouldn't have been found until it went into production.
I have repented of my test-less ways and I now promise to faithfully write my unit tests. I will still refuse to go to TDD unless I'm forced to. I just can't think that way...

Saturday, February 19, 2005

Hurray for me!

Well I got me a new job. It's with a small company in the Triangle that does mobile content delivery. THey have a couple big time customers and are growing rapidly. It was the hardest interview I've ever been on though. First they screen out potential candidates by making them take a technical test. It consisted of a couple programming questions, dealing with refactoring and some basic Java architecture questions. I submitted it back to the recruiter at like 7pm and by 7:30pm they had scheduled me for an interview. The interview was with a total of 5 people and lasted about 2 1/2 hours. 2 of their developers interviewed me on personality to see if I would be a good fit with their team. Then I had 2 more developers ask technical questions which were pretty in-depth. A lot of Java language semantics and pattern questions. Then I met with the director of development for about 30 minutes who asked pretty much the same things again except really quickly. The interview was over at around noon and by 3pm that same day they gave me an offer.

Needless to say I took it. The cool thing is it's just a 2 1/2 minute drive from my house. I should be riding my bike, but I need a helmet first. Wondering if I should get some speedos as well ;)

Their software is pretty well designed, with lots of design patterns involved. They use a lot of servlets, JSPs, and EJBs. My EJB skills kinda stink, but I think this is a great opportunity to get up to speed on the technology. They're gonna undergo a major refactoring soon, and there's talk of using Spring, Struts, and Hibernate. It's going to be a great job with lots of cool stuff going on.