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Category Archives: News

What’s going on here and there

The Story So Far and The Road Ahead

Episode 53

It’s time to do some summary of my writing up to now and lay down plans for 2017. Usually people write such articles at the end of December or beginning of January, but my article about the Hobbits journey through layers of abstraction grew a bit longer than I’ve initially anticipated and I didn’t want to interrupt the series. So here it is, in the second half of January: The story behind How To Train Your Java, some numbers, summary and further ideas.

Timeline

Every story has to begin somewhere. Let’s list some milestones the blog went through from the very beginning. One day I’ve decided, that I want  a blog. With a dragon, because why not.

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2014

  • August: It all started here. My initial idea was to write an enterprise application with all development infrastructure, tools, elements and all fancy stuff. I wrote twelve articles this month, mostly concerned with researching what to use for my project.
  • September: I started to drift away from the initial concept, did some categorization, two articles on Java optimization and retrospectives. The pace of one article a week was established.
  • October: There was a first book review, and three articles about conferences in Antwerp and London I’ve attended.
  • November: Hello World’s month. Besides another book review, I wrote about basics of Spring, GWT and Vaadin.
  • December: One article. That’s the moment where my motivation vanished. I lost interest in my project, and writing went down alongside.

Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on January 19, 2017 in News

 

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Software Talks Rzeszów Dec 2016 and banking apps security

Episode 48

Software Talks is a recurring event organized by PGS Software, consisting of tech talks, beer, pizza and a lot of fun. Some time ago I wrote about the two September editions in Wrocław and Gdańsk, in which I took part as a speaker. On December 8th there was another event, this time in Rzeszów, a city located in south-eastern Poland. I was a speaker for the third time in a row, but for the first time with my colleague Tomasz Zieliński, who recently made a lot of noise in Polish banking environment, preparing a report, which exposed several critical security issues and other major problems in their mobile banking applications. If you read my article about working for different types of companies, you might have noticed that I’m not a big fan of banks’ approach to software development, so I’m going to elaborate on Tomasz findings without mercy.

Background

Last time on Software Talks I spoke with Piotr Konieczny, Polish security expert. This time there was an idea to focus more on Java / software development topics, so I was on a mission to find a second Java speaker. I found one, but at the last moment some issues appeared and he couldn’t make it, so his place was taken by Tomasz, who is actually our Android expert.

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It was kind of a busy week for me, as I was three days in Berlin with our client, arrived in Wrocław on Wednesday evening, and an hour later I was in a car with Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on December 15, 2016 in News, Technology

 

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FutureDevDay Gliwice 2016

Episode 46

On November 25th I attended a small conference organized by Future Processing in Gliwice. We get there, me and my two friends, in less than two hours of driving from Wrocław. The conference was held in a really lovely building within a complex of Upper Silesian Agency for Entrepreneurship and Development. Few hundred developers gathered for a single track composed of 11 talks 25 minutes each and finally a special guest talking for an hour.

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At the end, there was an after party in a nearby bar (called “progress bar”, how cute!) with three discussion panels, food and beer.

Talks

Talks were grouped thematically into categories composed of two or three each. First were architectural ones, then frontend, cloud and finally big data. I decided to write more about few sessions I liked the most and to take liberty at titles translation, if required. Let’s start with Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on December 1, 2016 in News, Technology

 

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Zawiercie Oct 2016

Episode 39

First thing that comes to mind, if you are not my coworker, is probably “What the hell is Zawiercie?”. I hasten to explain, Zawiercie is a city in southern Poland, and recently a place of integration trip of my company. How is it related to Java or software development you may ask? Well, the blog is about software and peopleware, and there was a lot of people from software house there.

Off we go

It was actually first time I’ve been on event of this type that spanned more than one evening. Three groups of buses started at different hours from our three offices: Wrocław, Rzeszów and Gdańsk in order to meet in the same place at roughly the same time. It felt a bit like going back to school days. People are trying to seize the rear of the bus, since it’s the place where cool folks sit. Teachers (uhm… I mean HR people) are in the front to lead and watch the driver. And pretend nothing wrong is happening in the back. I thought I will do some reading, but later I went to the back of the bus and first thing I heard was: “Hey, you seem to be too sober. We need to fix that right away, sit down”.

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After arrival we met at the grill hall to eat something and Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on October 13, 2016 in News

 

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Software Talks Wrocław and Gdańsk Sep 2016

Episode 38

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Software Talks is an event hosted by my company, PGS Software, in three cities in Poland where we got our offices: Wrocław, Gdańsk and Rzeszów. The idea is to meet, share knowledge, talk about various aspect of software development and IT in general, drink beer, eat pizza and have fun. I’ll tell you the story of how that happened this time. And the story of my first truly public talk.

Behind the scenes

I joined the company just two months ago, and few days later I’ve read an email from HR addressed to Java team asking if anyone wants to be the PGS speaker at Software Talks. I thought “what the hell” and responded. Apparently I was the only one to do so, thus I became the first speaker. The other guy turned out to be guest star Piotr Konieczny,  founder of Niebezpiecznik.pl, well known (think 100 000 FB followers) Polish website / company with web security content and Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on October 6, 2016 in News

 

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Angular Intro

Episode 34

Talk is cheap. Show me the code.

– Linus Torvalds

          I’ve talked about recruitment and clean code recently, but I haven’t shown you any (or almost any) actual code for some time. Time to fix this. In November 2014 I’ve written articles about GWT and Vaadin. Now I’d like to present you something similar on AngularJS, which seems to be the most popular JavaScript framework nowadays. And despite being JavaScript, it’s actually pretty good. Let’s take a look.

Overview

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          Angular is a JavaScript open source front-end, single page, web application framework maintained by Google.

          It provides a standard structure for front-end project part, like GWT, much as Spring provide standard structure for back-end part. Its simplification, because you can do the front-end in Spring too via Spring MVC, and the structure for entire project is also partly defined by Maven or other convention over configuration type build tool, but it’s an idea to start with.

          It is single page framework, also like GWT, meaning Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on September 8, 2016 in News, Spring, Technology

 

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Devoxx Antwerp 2013 reminiscence

Episode 20

Let’s get back in time. Devoxx 2013 in Antwerp was actually my first big IT conference. Since there was no direct flights, I drove there with two friends a bit over 1k km, which wasn’t so bad considering it was mostly German Autobahn and we had a nice car which itself had only 1k km of mileage (mileage given in km, doesn’t it sound funny?) when we started. It was nice little adventure.

How is Devoxx different than Jax? Well, it’s muuuch bigger. There was like 7 to 10 times more people. The conference took place in a second largest cinema complex in Europe, meaning that talks were delivered on big screens with excellent audio. There were 10 halls, two with capacity over 800 people. Exhibiting companies were like: Google, Oracle, Red Hat, Microsoft and that kind of league. There were chief architects of stuff. They were gadgets like chess robots, machinery out of Lego Technics bricks and all the stuff geeks like.

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There was even a game where you could see entire audience on the big screen, and there were virtual fruits (seen on the screen superimposed over the camera image) thrown at them. If the fruit happens to hit your location, you had to slash it with arm movement to get points. People were divided in two teams, two halves of the audience, and more hits equalled winning entire game.

Jax had better food on the other hand ;)

Similarly to posts on Jax, I will quickly present talks I’ve watched. Main part of Devoxx was one day longer than Jax, and I since it was almost a year, I don’t remember everything exactly, so there will be a selection.

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Lambda: A peek Under the Hood by Brian Goetz.

I made a reference to this talk already in The Peak of the Mountain. Very technical details of JVM internals, not for everyone and perhaps not so useful in everyday development, but very interesting for me. And the speaker is the chief Java Language architect.

The Crazyflie Nano Quadcopter by Crazyflie team.

One of the cool ones. Story of developing tiny quadcopter both from hardware and software point of view with all the ups and downs.

The Modular Java Platform and Project Jigsaw by Mark Reinhold.

Java is big and tangled, but there are efforts to untangle the platform and make it more efficient especially on tiny devices with very limited resources . Nice to see a talk by Java platform chief architect regardless of the topic.

Shaping the future of web development by Lars Bak.

Keynote by Google and official release of Dart 1.0 with ambitious dream, “ultimately to replace JavaScript as the lingua franca of web development on the open web platform”. Thumbs up. Most important thing for me is static type system. Writing anything bigger than 500 Lines of code in JS was always pain in the ass. It’s been 19 wonderful years, thank you very much, time for something better.

Java 8 Language Capabilities – What’s in it for you? by Venkat Subramaniam.

At the time that was the first presentation about lambdas for me. Very dynamic yet easy to follow and technically very well done.

Introduction to Google Glass by Alain Regnier.

Well, what can you say besides that Google Glass is an awesome technology. Still in prototype phase, and with a lot of improvements along the way. Alain presents how to connect to the device from your PC, how to control it with voice or head motion and what you can do with it. Possibilities seem to be endless.

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Taming Drones: How Java Controls the Uprising Drone Force by Timon Veenstra and Eva Veenstra-Kazakov

Another cool talk about quadcopters. You can buy one for $300, attach Raspberry Pi for $30, some sensors, do some programming and voilà, you have an autonomous drone which can fly over the field, do some photos and recharge itself when needed. At the end, you can use data to tell the farmer where he should apply more irrigation to get the most out of his plants. Countless other things you can do for a few bucks.

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Besides I remember attending Cryptographic operations in the browser by Nick Van den Bleeken, EJB 3.2 and Beyond by David Blevins, Java EE 7: What’s new in the Java EE Platform by Daniel Delabassee, Spring Framework 4.0 – The Next Generation by Sam Branen, Batch Applications or the Java Platform (JSR 352) by Scott Kurz. And there were few others I can’t remember.

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Overall, in my opinion Devoxx is much better than Jax. Longer, much more speakers to choose from, much more “cool” stuff outside of Big Data, Enterprise and Java for a very similar ticket price.

beer

And somehow I prefer both Belgian beer and weather over English ;) See you next time.

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Posted by on October 26, 2014 in News, Technology

 

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Jax London 2014, day two

Episode 19

Apparently London busted me. Or Stansted. Or the graceful 737-800 from cheap Irish airlines. Anyway, I’m supposed to stay at home for the rest of the week, so in between aspirin and vitamin C I can try to continue my story of the Jax conference. Let’s move on to day two sessions.

Developing applications with a micro-service architecture keynote by Chris Richardson.

Micro-services are definitely a hot topic nowadays. Another fancy name for keeping parts of your code separated. Chris however is not an evangelist who will come and show you the only right way. Instead the session was very balanced, giving you pros and cons of the idea.

GridGain 6.0: Open Source In-Memory Computing Platform by Nikita Ivanov.

Ram is cheap now. And turns out that it is even cheaper when you look at hardware maintenance costs over few years. And daily, operational datasets fits in today’s Ram. GridGain looks like a Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on October 21, 2014 in News, Technology

 

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Jax London 2014, day one

Episode 18

That was a longer break from writing. Jax 2014 conference is over, time to do some recap. The proper event was held in London 14 – 15 October in Business Design Centre, Islington, London. There were also some workshops 13 October, but I decided to skip those. Primary topics were Java, web and mobile, development practices, agile and big data.

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Some quick numbers: Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on October 19, 2014 in News, Technology

 

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Winds of change

Entry 14, day 44

Hello again. I’ve said some time ago, that I will perform a retrospective on my own writing. Time to do that. I had this one rule, that if I do anything in the project, I will post. But I thought this through and decided, that I want this blog to be more appealing to readers and worth going back to. So I’m going to focus more on quality of writing and less on frequency and personal logging of progress in my pet project. This of course does not mean I’m going to abandon it. You will hear about BookSentry, that’s for sure, it just not going to be the main theme.

I divided the content in roughly three areas:

Enterprise technologies. More elaboration on my technology stack, perhaps some comparisons and tutorials. Also about tools I use or going to use, so tips for Eclipse, plugins for Jenkins and all the stuff around.

Clean Code and Object Oriented Design. Underrated nowadays I think but tremendously important. Java is actually where your application takes shape. Even though there are frameworks, conventions, howtos found via google in seconds etc, the ability to create good code is absolutely crucial. On high level – general architecture, on middle level – design patterns and subsystems architecture, and on low level – how to name a damn variable.

Agile/Scrum. How to get a group of people to create an amazing software. I’m not an expert Agile coach (only a certified professional scrum master ;)), but I have experience from places with Scrum and without Scrum. And I’m happy to share it with you.

New posts will probably come once or twice a week. At least I will try post at least once per week. On occasion there will be some more philosophical posts, book reviews, news or other situational stuff.

Speaking of situational stuff, I’m excited to attend the JAX conference. in London, October 14 – 15. There will be a quite detailed coverage here, hope you are curious what’s new in Java world. I am ;)

Thanks for all the visits up to date, hope you will keep coming back ;) Also big thanks for all the feedback I’ve received. I’ve learned a lot and I’m trying to apply all advices as much as possible. As a curiosity, here is the breakdown on where are you from:

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In the next episode, we will talk about Java performance. Once, we did a big refactoring with my friend and we made a quite substantial piece of software run up to 500 times faster and allocate up to 20 times less memory. If you think that computers have unlimited computational power nowadays… well they don’t. Most of the time performance is not an issue, but there are case where it is. Curious? See you next time.

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Posted by on September 14, 2014 in News