Tuesday, July 13, 2004

Java Weenies and the Real Work

I've been hanging out a lot at The Server Side reading about the latest goings on in the Java community. I soon realized that I am about 2 years behind on technology, and that apparently everyone is up and using the latest and greatest tool.

When I first started this blog, one of the things I was looking to do was to get back in touch with the technology world and get involved again. But I needed to take a step back and learn what the heck was going on in the technology world again.

When I took a few years off from hardcore geekage, to meet my wife, get married, get the advanced degree from SMS, I had a pretty good idea that I would be behind. I knew this for several reasons...when I did that I was without a technology. Perl/COBOL didn't seem to be a tech path at the time...little did I know that it could be...but I digress. I went to school without a technology, starting a new job, etc.

When I finished school, the wedding, assloads of work and everything else kept me from really learning about Java..you know...life. So for the past 6 months...and really hardcore over the past 2 months...I've been trying to get caught up. Not an easy task.

Unfortunately, it's complicated by Java Weenies. These tools are so caught up on standards, doing things the "right" way, that they can't possibly have real jobs, or they'd never get anything done. They talk about standard this, standard that, yet they don't appear to have worked with the technology in any capacity. Meaning, they don't get involved with the data of business. They build cool tools, talk about frameworks, try to make things look pretty, but don't get involved with how to make the data dance.

There are some tools out there...like Hibernate, that do object persistance on databases. The problem with this idea, is it's next to impossible to migrate your data to a new database in a piecemeal fashion. Everything is an all or nothing proposition. I've dealt with IBM's VAP...same issues.

Yet, bring these issues up, and Java Weenies think you're on crack. They talk about that's why they went to work for tool vendors. That's why they speak at conventions, to bring their wisdom on how to do things to the clueless.

Java Weenie...here's a clue...if you're building a tool...remember your customer. I'm your customer. Not other weenies. The customers that keep you employed are the ones actually being used in mission critical systems...not the ones that are building another cool toy to play with.

If you don't find ways to make migration from one platform to another easy...then you're shooting yourself in the foot. No one's going to use your cool new toy if it's too costly to get started in using it. Remember...cost is not just "free software"...it's support costs and migration costs.

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