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Total Eclipse

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Today there was a near-total eclipse. Glasgow was overcast and the only evidence was a slight darkness. Just as we thought we were going to miss it the maximum-eclipse (or thereabouts) struggled through, pale and moon-like through a veil of cloud. Then a few minutes later we caught a brighter glimpse.

But this article is about Eclipse the Java...
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Misplaced Advice

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I was doing some marking in the first year teaching labs and there was an incident that made me think hard about the way I give advice. On this particular day the students had to write a method to add up all the numbers in an array. Here was one solution:

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Code Review

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There is a design and it is incredible. It exists in documents and on whiteboards and in some unit tests but mainly it exists in my head. It's a marvel of software engineering, both efficient and elegant. It is instantly updated as my understanding of the problem evolves or as the requirements change or as my original assumptions are dashed in...
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Fixing Java on the Desktop

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Java has a poor reputation for writing desktop applications. This is despite having no fewer than three GUI toolkits in its core libraries. It has the Abstract Window Toolkit (AWT) which uses the native operating system's UI controls. The AWT has been long superseded by Swing. Swing uses lightweight controls (i.e. drawn by Java, not the OS)...
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Some Blogs I Like

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Finding good programming blogs is a tricky business. Here is a list I have curated over the last couple of years.

http://blog.8thlight.com/...
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My Code Has Dozens of Errors

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Imagine the situation: You're in your programming 101 class and are working on your homework assignment. You have to write a program to do something. Mortgages seem to be a dull but popular topic.

So, you're writing your dull Mortgage program (like you will even care what a mortgage is for another decade). You might have spent a couple of...
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Shaking up the Industry with Scala

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There is soon to be a big change wrought on the programming community, and it is going to be driven by hardware. Processor speed is about as fast as it can be with current technology. To satisfy the need for speed, manufacturers are combining several chips into parallel processors. Multicore is the future and that means concurrent...
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Humbled by Prolog

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I was very excited to reach Prolog. It was something completely new to me, so much so that it made me feel like a complete beginner in a way that nothing in programming has in a very long time.

I'm working my way through Seven Languages in Seven Weeks by Bruce Tate. So far we have explored Ruby and Io.

Prolog is a declarative language....
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Io in Seven Languages in Seven Weeks

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I've just finished week two of Seven Languages in Seven Weeks by Bruce Tate. Last week was Ruby where we dived into writing Domain Specific languages and meta programming. The Ruby chapter got me thinking about how I can use mixins in Java...
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Mixins in Java

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One of the great things with learning new languages is it helps me to think about problems in different ways. After learning a little bit of SML I'm happier using recursive solutions in Java. When I choose wisely, it makes my code a little cleaner. As part of working through the Seven Languages in Seven Days book, I learned about mixins in...

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July 2015

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