Using Java Development Tools To Reduce Costs and Save Time
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Using Java Development Tools To Reduce Costs and Save Time

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Both JBuilder and Delphi bring considerable tools to the...

Both JBuilder and Delphi bring considerable tools to the
market to support the process behind Software Archeology. During this time
with fewer resources, most likely the odds of picking up someone else’s code is
going to be very high. So having tools that can tell you where the code is bad,
poor-performing, or poorly-constructed can save huge amounts of time
throughout the entire process.Both JBuilder and Delphi bring considerable tools to the
market to support the process behind Software Archeology. During this time
with fewer resources, most likely the odds of picking up someone else’s code is
going to be very high. So having tools that can tell you where the code is bad,
poor-performing, or poorly-constructed can save huge amounts of time
throughout the entire process.

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    Using Java Development Tools To Reduce Costs and Save Time Using Java Development Tools To Reduce Costs and Save Time Document Transcript

    • 27_28_PP 24_2.qxp 3/5/09 10:26 AM Page 27 JAVA CORNER Hard Times Could Mean Expanding Opportunities by Michael J. Rozlog W ow, how times have changed. It does not seem like a day goes by that you don’t hear about a major RIF (Reduction In Force) or huge layoffs at major companies all over the country and around the world. However, I’ve been in the business a good amount of time and remember not so long ago (9 years ago) that if you could spell the word “CPU” you could get a job in the computer industry making a great salary. As I was told growing up, all things that go up usually come down, and things that go down usually go back up. The one key word that most leave off that sentence is “eventually” and I believe that to be true with this situation; it just might not be as fast as many of us hope. This brings us to the point of this write-up.While none of us want to see co-workers or valuable resources, or ourselves for that matter, removed from the company, it is a One of the keys to fact of life that we as developers will most likely have to do more with less during this down economy. Hopefully, one of the reasons why you are being kept at your writing a great tool company is because you bring a value that others do not—and that you understand how to apply the value back to the bottom line. As budgets get tighter, the amount is to make it easy of work that needs to be done usually does not shrink, it actually goes up.This will mean that while this recession is taking place, we will have more collectively on our to learn or to plates to get done and most likely have a shorter amount of time to do it in. I’m going to state the obvious: there are only 24 hours in a day; no matter how you allow what you’ve slice, dice, or cut it, 24 hours is 24 hours. So with an ever expanding list of things to do, it makes sense that the old-adage is true “we will need to work smarter, not learned in the past harder.” By the way, I hate that cliché, but in this case it is true, just like “You get what you pay for,” which I will discuss further on. to be applied to Let’s be honest.When we say there are 24 hours in a day, what does that really break something new. down as? Many management experts say the typical IT worker breaks down the day as follows: Average hours in the office: 8 Number of meetings per day: 3 Average length of meetings: 1 hour 15 minutes Average lunch: 45 minutes Average breaks (company supported or unsupported): 2 Average length of breaks: 15 minutes Number of times to the bathroom: 3 Average time in bathroom: 9.5 minutes So if you agree with the above, the average IT worker puts in about 3 - 5 hours of work a day. I don’t mean to say that meetings are not work, but they usually take time away from programming and creating solutions. That does not give a lot of time for any real progress to be made.This means that we have many long nights and long weekends ahead of us for the foreseeable future.The interesting thing that I see all the time is people doing things the hard way. I meet customers all the time that still use notepad or some little text editor that may or may not have the ability to do syntax highlighting. I’m not saying that is the most important feature, but it is one that has been around for many years and has generally been considered a value- add. These customers will write 100s of lines of code over and over, again and again. I hear comments like “I know what I’ve written,”“I understand it better when I write it,” and the scariest one of all “I get paid for being here whether I write the PROGRAMMERS.COM 800.445.7899 27
    • 27_28_PP 24_2.qxp 3/5/09 10:26 AM Page 28 JAVA CORNER code or it gets generated by some tool!”The first two examples I can almost Keep this in mind before starting any new forgive, but the last is the kind that if made in the current economic conditions project. Find a tool or tools that will help could be detrimental to your long-term employment. you get your job done better and faster Take building a house (another cliché) as an example.Yes, you could go out and and your employer will take note, because cut down your own trees, then cut the wood to make 2 x 4s and planks of the savings can be astounding. wood, but it would be very inefficient. I could use a rock to pound in nails, or I One other thing, as you read this, could use something better like a hammer—or if I want even better than that, I Embarcadero will have released All- could use an automatic nail gun. Each one allows me to get more done in a Access™, which brings together the shorter amount of time, however, I’ve heard construction workers complain that entire tool chest in one offering. Ok, I nail guns encourage excessive use of nails because it is too easy. That same know many of you are rolling your eyes correlation can be made in programming, the generated code from a tool is not and saying “Wow, Embarcadero is doing an as tight or optimized as I would write it myself. While this may be true, I believe MSDN like subscription.”While that is that having hundreds of lines of code generated in less than a second will give sort-of true, we have a few major you time on the back end, not having to debug, test, and syntax check as much, differences.The biggest is that our which then gives you plenty of time to optimize the code.Again, we have to subscription is a perpetual license, so if start to use tools to get more things done. you don’t keep your subscription up to Developer tools come in all types, from cryptic hard-to-use to the kinds that date, the products don’t deactivate, they make the job of developing code a joy. I like to think Embarcadero is in that continue on.We also have different levels 2nd category, and I think some of the examples with our latest products show that can be obtained that fit the needs this to be true. For example, if you need to build an n-tier environment with a better.The great thing about All-Access™ front-end that is either web based or rich client, Delphi 2009 has no real is that users of the products can use the competition. One of the keys to writing a great tool is to make it easy to learn or tools when they are needed. For to allow what you’ve learned in the past to be applied to something new.This is example, I don’t have to look for an SQL the case for the new DataSnap technologies. As a developer I can create a tool during my project or call the DBA to business tier as easily as I can create a database tier or client tier. It has always help me with SQL, I can simply load up been easy to create 1 of the tiers or even 2 of the tiers, but to really create an n- Rapid SQL and use it while I need it, then tier environment added a lot of time and complexity. Now, using the same put it back in the tool chest when approach that I’ve used for years, I can create that business layer by dropping a completed, out of the way until next time. ServerModule and writing general Functions and Procedures as I would any So keep in mind during these uncertain other program.What makes it special is that those Functions and Procedures are times that having a full set of tools is automatically exposed to the client and back-ends, making the job about 90 really an advantage.Take a few minutes percent faster than before.This is real time savings and that saving can then be and read the documentation and review applied to other tasks. the “What’s new” section in the latest set As many of you who have read this column before from me know, I love of tools that you use. It might surprise Software Archeology and in a down economy it is going to be a mainstay for the you just how many new and very cool foreseeable future. Both JBuilder and Delphi bring considerable tools to the things can be found in one particular market to support the process behind Software Archeology. During this time tool; heck you may even find that solution with fewer resources, most likely the odds of picking up someone else’s code is to the problem you’ve been having. Plus, going to be very high. So having tools that can tell you where the code is bad, to end this article on another well known poor-performing, or poorly-constructed can save huge amounts of time cliché,“if you have a problem, then throughout the entire process.The tools investment is small compared to the someone has most likely solved it already, loss of an individual. Look at it this way, if you take the average fully loaded IT at least once!” So in these troubled times, resource at $80 dollars an hour, fully loaded, and compare that to a cost of a tool look toward tools to help solve issues and that could save 5 hours a week of work, it does not take many days to pay for it. you just might find new opportunities everywhere you look. Register for one or all of the webinars going over the technology at: www.codegear.com/webinars ABOUT THE AUTHOR Mike Rozlog is the Sr. Director of Java Solutions for Embarcadero Technologies. In this role, he is focused on ensuring the Java developer products being created by Embarcadero meet the expectations of developers around the world. Much of his time is dedicated to discussing and explaining the technical and business aspects of Embarcadero’s products and services to analysts and other audiences worldwide. Mike was formerly with CodeGear, a developer tools group that was acquired by Embarcadero in 2008. Previously, he spent more than eight years working for Borland in a number of positions, including a primary role as Chief Technical Architect. A reputed author, Mike has been published numerous times. His latest collaboration is Mastering JBuilder from John Wiley & Sons, Inc. He can be reached at michael.rozlog@embarcadero.com 28 800.445.7899 PROGRAMMERS.COM