Learning Learning Learning

Before I can master one thing, I am off to something else.  Usually, that is my doing if I can’t find something big enough to keep me pursuing a new technology.  For example, I love the language Google Go.  But, I have been able to find a project big enough for me to do anything other than just play with it a bit, get excited about how cool and different it is, put it away for a bit, and then come back to refresh.

But now, just as I was settling into learning and really getting good with Single-Web Applications (using Ember JS, Foundation CSS, and HandleBars) and my other nice web-development application WaveMaker.  I get pulled off by my tasks at work to learn and master Python, Django, and OpenStack.  All of them, except Django, I had learn a bit about earlier, but didn’t really have anything I can do with them besides playing around.  I don’t have enough computers to deploy a meaningful private Cloud.  And while I spend a few days before going to my current company learning Python, that too I had to put away because I didn’t or couldn’t find a real use for.

Fortunately, things are going quickly due to my previous brushes with the language.  So while I am lamenting not being able to focus on WaveMaker, Ember JS, et.al.  I am glad to be working on things that I had tried and found interesting. I still intend to get back to the other things.

I almost forgot another old friend I started messing with this weekend, Android.  I haven’t had anything to do in Android for about a year or more now.  But a buddy of mine asked me to help me with some Android work, so back into that pot too I go. Again, glad to see Android tooling have improved quite a bit and with the new Android Studio looking very promising, this should be fun.

Frankly, I am glad we will be focusing on the latest devices, freeing us to use the more beautiful UI and features.  Trying to write apps that works well on new and old platforms, while still taking advantage of the new one is a bit of a pain in Android.  The support library helps, but the coding is not the same.

WaveMaker – A Really Productive Way To Create Java Web Apps

I first started creating Web applications using JSP/JSF pages and Servlets.  I really followed the J2EE standard on creating Web apps.  Then I thought that was too cumbersome and started looking for alternatives.

I landed on Apache Struts 2, Apache Wicket Framework, Symfony, PHP Zen, and quite a bit more. Even tried Ruby on Rails for a little bit.  Eventually, I was back at the J2EE way of doing things, except using Grails.

With Grails,  things were so much easier than having to deal with all the issues you have when creating a web application.  There is the routing, services, db integration, and just wiring up the whole thing.  That is not what you are trying to solve. So Grails made all of that go away nicely, while staying with Java.  So no need to learn another language.

a UI library called Zk and Grails to back it up.  It was fairly easy to construct a UI in Zk.  Even though it was xml and mostly by hand. But I manage to force my friends to use it and we created an application for a client.  I think using Grails too was a stretch for them, as they didn’t have the background in Spring.

I kind of regret using that so extensively, when there were other things that might have worked just as well with less pain.

I enjoyed the Grails way of things without Zk and did my own thing, while my friends pursued using Jdev extensively.  For them, having been burned with Zk and a lot of hand coding of forms and configuration, they wanted a WYSIWYG type of development.

I have tried Jdev, I really have.  It is a steep learning curve and I still don’t seem to get it.  So when I got really busy with my new job, well. It was just impossible to continue on that road.

At worked, we do things the ‘harder’ way some might say. We have embraced using the Spring framework and JSF 2 via PrimeFaces UI JSF library.  A few teams have taken an exception to this, and started doing things using NodeJS and Single-Web-App.

I really enjoyed using Spring a long time ago, but just couldn’t convinced my buddied to embrace it when we did apps.  So now, I am back in Spring land at work and at home, as I jump head first into WaveMaker.  I already see that WaveMaker today, does not solve all my problems, and there is one frustrating thing, using external JAR libraries.  To use an external jar, you have to write a Java class, which both exposes methods to WM and delegates to the JAR library.  This is just too much extra work.  WM should find some way to generating delegating calls for straight calls.  But that is basically my only complaint at the moment.

Rapsodeus 2013 – The Light

I was watching a video on YouTube looking for Italians vs. Europeans and then I stumbled upon another video by the same author called Rapsodeus 2013.  What is interesting I think about this video, is that I can’t rally describe what it, but I know what kinds of idea I have in my head as I watch it.

I don’t want to bias you in anyway if you are going to watch the video. So if you are going to watch, which I recommend you do. Then stop here, watch the video and come back.

Okay, so what were you thinking as you watch the video? Any different before you started watching it or just, what the hell is this?  🙂  Well, here is what I was thinking and I am curious if anyone else had similar ideas as they watched it.

One of the things that fascinated me, was how these simple creatures seems so content, but a little sad, in their cages, then became so violent. They got taken in by an object, and for us it could just be a light. But what is it really? I can’t say I know and I don’t think they know either. But yet, they are committed to getting their hand on it.  As a result, things quickly goes from peaceful to chaotic.

Whether the need to capture the light spurred new inventions or existing technologies were adapted to pursue the light, we don’t know. But the two ideas are probably interwoven there.

For what purpose do they want the light  Did they know about the light before?  It looks like it was introduced.  They looked very surprised when it was first introduced, but I can’t prove that.  So there is this idea of desirability of something unknown at all cost.

Then I wondering if this an analogy of the human pursuit. Whatever that pursuit is, religion, science, spirituality, peace, etc.  If we had the perspective to step back, would we too, see that we are chasing something that is just strung out before us. Never to lay our hands on it, yet generations after generations, we try. So this quest we are on, this pursuit, it seems like we were trust into it.  Not having have any memory of our choice or initial role in it. Just that we are here, eventually achieve consciousness  and off we go or may be we are going before we even realize it.

If there is a goal to this pursuit, what is it?  To what are we progressing, if we are at all progressing.  Or are we just decaying into chaos?