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Java open source

A big deadline was dropped on my lap last week.  Immutable deadline.

Googling later that day, I found an open source package that does 90% of what I want it to do, so I downloaded it.  To do a good job on the remaining 10%, I need to understand what this code does and how it operates.  The last three days have been spent doing exactly that.

It uses libraries I've never touched. I've got one eye on the source and one eye on the manuals to deconstruct it. It was annoying at first, but my Java skills have really expanded because of this.  I'm just about done.  I have a shot at meeting the deadline, and I got smarter for the effort.

Thank God for Java open source libraries.
Too shy
Monday, June 18, 2007
 
 
Over on the BoS forum, there is this tendency to bash the OSS community.  It's pretty funny that a lot of these same mISVs use OSS libraries within their products.

Which library are you using?
Steve Moyer Send private email
Monday, June 18, 2007
 
 
Steve, to be fair they normally bash the GPL-type OSS. Very little bashing of BSD and MIT licences goes on.
Code Stealer
Monday, June 18, 2007
 
 
Good point! ... And there are many excellent Java libraries that are LGPL (which is fairly uISV friendly).

Still, if you're going to use OSS software, you can certainly contribute back to both applications and libraries without pretending you're going to lose your business over it.  How many are using Apache products?  Firefox?  MySQL or PostgreSQL?  These products are unlikely to displace any uISVs, so why the hostility?  (Whose going to even try to build a web-browser as a uISV?

As a postscript, I should also admit that the GPL3 (as I've studied it so far), does seem to go a bit far.
Steve Moyer Send private email
Monday, June 18, 2007
 
 
> Thank God for Java open source libraries.

I hope you have told your boss you are using open source code to do the work?
Jussi Jumppanen
Monday, June 18, 2007
 
 
I think your practical odds of contributing back to, e.g., Apache are zero, but if you want to take a stab at getting a patch past their gatekeepers go right ahead.  You're probably better off supporting a newer, lower profile project if you want to make a difference.  I tossed Paint.NET, which was absolutely indispensable for me, a bit of money, wrote and released a two line tweak to Lightbox that makes it better by an inch, and will eventually release some Ruby on Rails code which performs a boring "ditchdigging for programmers" task that I think many people could benefit from never having to think of again. 

(Since it is a patch against Ruby's convenience methods for Date I am going to try to get it into the core release but, again, there are gatekeepers and I am not going to spend many hours of my life trying to champion its way through.)
Patrick McKenzie (Bingo Card Creator) Send private email
Tuesday, June 19, 2007
 
 
@Jussi - Yes, I told my boss.  He was happy.

@Steve - It uses dynamic proxies, something that has been in Java since 1.3 but I've never used it until now.
Too Shy
Tuesday, June 19, 2007
 
 
"I think your practical odds of contributing back to, e.g., Apache are zero, but if you want to take a stab at getting a patch past their gatekeepers go right ahead."

Agreed ... put it in a bug report and "let it go" (if it loves you, it will come back to you).

If 1000 people contribute patches for a bug, the gatekeepers only need to implement 1.  Our hope is that the pick the best patch.
Steve Moyer Send private email
Tuesday, June 19, 2007
 
 
Patrick: I think it's certainly possible to contribute to apache.
Aspiring College Developer
Tuesday, June 19, 2007
 
 
I do, too, if you are a senior engineer working for one of the organizations (IBM, Sun, etc) which does most of the heavy lifting for them.  Otherwise, well...  your odds are much better elsewhere.
Patrick McKenzie (Bingo Card Creator) Send private email
Wednesday, June 20, 2007
 
 
Contributing in the sense of designing a major feature or module?  Probably not, unless you are professionally employed, but contributing in the form of bug fixes is certainly possible.  I'm not sure about apache but I know it is for some of the major java open source projects.
Vincent Send private email
Thursday, June 21, 2007
 
 
Well, the documentation could use some spiffing up.  The method names don't exactly match what is in the classes.  Close, but wrong.

I'll submit what I see, they can take it or leave it.
Too Shy
Friday, June 22, 2007
 
 

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