Monday, April 25, 2005

Sun Certified Java Programmer

Well at long last I finally received the results from the Beta version of the Sun Certified Java Programmer for Java 5 certification test I took last February. The great news is that I passed. I am now a fully certified, card carrying SCJP. Now I can move on to the Certified Java Developer test. That one is pretty interesting in that you are required to develop an actual program to given specs. More exciting than just taking some test :-).

Also if you haven't seen it, check out Tom Kyte's new blog. He is the man behind Which is THE place to go if you are doing Oracle development. The man has forgotten more about Oracle than I will probably ever learn. Very interesting read.

Wednesday, April 13, 2005

Brave New World

Well as I mentioned in earlier postings some great new things are happening soon for me. April 29 will be my last day with my current employer DailyAccess Corporation. After 2.5 years with DAC I have decided to accept a fantastic position with a company called

Filters-NOW is a local company that distributes and manufactures all manner of filters. We have Air, Vacuum, Water, HEPA,... pretty much anything that ends in the word filter we have. I will start my new position on May 2.

While I am extremely excited to begin my new job, it has been a very bittersweet experience. Working at DAC has been the most fun I have ever had at a job. The people I worked with were great. I will really miss that group. This is just going to be another test of how well I can keep in touch with my friends there (has never been one of my strong suits).

One of the exciting (and I admit a bit scary) things about the new place will be a whole new development environment. I will be saying goodbye to PowerBuilder, Java, and Oracle and saying hello to Linux, Apache, MySQL, and PHP. Always good to get familiar with other technologies, so I can't wait.

I will keep you all informed of the goings on at the new place.

Also on a side note, with my group of co-workers at DAC we have submitted 3 proposals to Sybase's TechWave 2005 conference. We should know by mid May if any/all have been accepted. I spoke there last year and it was an amazing time. I look forward to being able to attend again this year.

Monday, April 11, 2005

Design Patterns Study Group

I read a great article over at regarding the new head first book Head First Design Patterns

I have flipped through these books before and was fascinated by the unique approach to learning that they take. I have read other books by Kathy Sierra and Bert Bates and am a faithful subscriber to their blog Creating Passionate Users. These guys really have a fantastic writing style and are not afraid to stretch the boundaries of what a technical book should be like.

So after reading this article I finally broke down and ordered this book. I have the classic GoF (Gang of Four) Design Patterns book, but it is really one to be studied more than read, so I am looking forward to a different presentation of the material.

The OnJava article got me thinking about whether I could start a study group like this up at my local university, the University of South Alabama. Well let's break it down on how I would sell it to the CIS department.

What I would need: I would need class space on a weekly or semi-weekly basis for meetings. I would expect the department to publicize to their students.

Other than that they would not have to provide too much. I would send out info to local companies to try and bring out people. I would prepare to present material each week. (I actually see it as a half lecture, half discussion type environment. That way the students and other developers that are not familiar with the material can get up to speed and we can all share ideas).

What is the upside for all involved: Networking opportunities for the students that attend and those employed in the field that attend. Opportunities for the CIS Department to try and convince those working in the field to finish Undergraduate degrees or begin Graduate degrees in CIS. Overall learning of good, reusable design principles that improve the quality of the developers and students (plus sharp students give the department a good rep once they get out).

Well I'm still in the planning stages, and I'm about to take on some big new responsibilities (which I can tell you about after tomorrow), so I'm not sure how this will play out, but it is a thought. Let me know what you think.

Monday, April 04, 2005

You What???

A conversation today with a friend I've been trying to get on the phone for a couple of weeks:

"Yes I'm alive. I went to Paris, Got Engaged, Came back, and Got Fired."

Now that is definitely more eventful than my last vacation. Makes me wonder what boring things I've been doing the last two weeks. Definitely nothing to compare to this pal's adventures.

I myself will have some exciting news to share soon, but not just yet.

So what do you get for the baby that has everything? Well of course Johnny Cash clothing:

Got to send this to some friends with young ones.