Friday, July 06, 2007

Google Web Toolkit

Joseph Sinclair from the Phoenix Google office demo'd GTW (rhymes with 'Whit') at the Austin Java User's Group. He said the Austin Google office was one week old and they would be hiring soon. Sidney, ad recruiter was on hand to answer employment type questions.
GWT compiles real java code into JavaScript that will run crossbrowser applications. GWT obsficates the code and reduces the download by 5 to 10 times. GWT uses the Visitor and Decorator patterns extensively.
GWT is tested by Selenium and fitnesse.
More info at
Sidney handed out a bunch of cool notebooks and pens.

"No Fluff, Just Stuff" Austin 2007

Last weekend I attended the "No Fluff, Just Stuff" conference here in Austin for the second year. Here's a brief jumbled summary of items that struck me hard enough to remember.

  1. Neal Ford gave a talk on Service Oriented Architecture:
    SOA is much easier with an Agile Process
    Read Martin Fowler's book "Patterns of Architecture" especially "ModelViewPresenter".
    For SOA inside the Firewall just use chunks of XML wizing between your apps.
    Use WebServices for outside your firewall.
    Strongly typed interfaces make fragile apps - use xml instead.
    SOAP is Corba with angle brackets.
    SOAP is the answer to the question: How can I make my apps slower?
  2. Stuart Holloway talked about Ajax
    Tips for using the Prototype library:
    $A turns collections into iteratable collections: $A(['asdf','fda','asdf']).each( )
    JavaScript is more dense, but has the same number of bugs, so you need to test more often.
    The move to functional languages, which is really going on, will make us think denser.
    Functions used all the time should have shorter names.
  3. Neal Ford on Debugging the Browser
    He asked how many developers had to deploy on IE? Almost everyone raised their hand. How many use Firefox to develop? Almost everyone raised their hand.
    Recommended using Firebug to debug and profile code.
    Venkman is a good tool as well, especially for debugging XUL since Venkman can start before XUL.
    "No time to stop for gas, we're already late!"
    JsUnit is a port of JUnit for testing JavaScript.
    Neal gave an example using "Perfect Numbers", those whose factors sum to themselves.
    He demonstrated Selenium which was impressive.
    He recommended XPather plugin for Firefox for creating XPath expressions.
  4. Scott Davis on WebServices:
    Dave Winer, originator of the SOAP idea: "SOAP is a failure."
    Google has deprecated its SOAP interface, moving to REST.
    SOAP is the EJB of the XUL world.
    Roy Fielding creating the idea of REST in his 2000 Doctoral dissertation.
    All Yahoo api's are REST.
    Amazon says 10% of its api usage is SOAP, 90% REST.
    Recommended "Restful Web Services" by O'Reilly.
    Gdata is the new api for all of Google's web apis.
    Atom does PUT, POST, GET, and DELETE

Parting thoughts: Every presenter used a mac. JavaScript is making a comeback.