KillerSites Blog

Java

Too Old to Rock n’Roll?

October 25, 2019

Young developers are hyper concerned about learning the newest programming languages and frameworks only … but the most popular languages today are 20+ years old!

Alright yung’uns, gather ’round the fire… I know, everyone has indoor heating and there’s no need for fires anymore but this is gonna help with the over all ‘flavor’ for this blog…

Many you young devs are focusing on the shiniest, newest programming languages and frameworks, and while I salute your moxi, your gusto, heck; even your gumption… I’m here to tell ya, that there’s a difference between new and popular. I know when you’re listening to your CardiB’s and your Lizzo’s, you may not see a distinction but in the programming world, lemme tell ya, bucko, there is definitely a difference…

“…For a long, long time -like 10/20 years- especially when it came to the web stack, the technology changed so often…websites and web apps…it has changed so radically.” Now, as I understand with you yung’uns, 10 or 20 years ago might as well be 100 years ago but, “…when it comes to the actual programming languages (the popular ones that are used to date), …they are pretty much entrenched. I think you’re not going to see a big move away from the major players over the next long time. Why? There’s just no need to. Now in the past you would create a programming language because there was a particular need that was very important, but it was not addressed by current languages.”

Also, over the years as computers have become markedly faster (CPUs and memory both have become faster and cheaper), the need for highly optimized programming languages have become arguably less and less important, because a human eyeball won’t necessarily notice execution speed on most modern computers because they process that information much more efficiently than a computer from 10 or 20 years ago.

The VLOG goes into waayyy more detail, we’re talking SQLs, Bootstrap, even RUBY (and only an inkling of an insult too). But, “when it comes to the major programming [and coding] languages of today, not much has changed in many years. …On the advanced stuff yeah, but in terms of language, not much has changed. …When you’re looking at the languages, at the technology, it’s not as critical to have stuff that was created in the last two minutes. The big ones [programming languages] they’re not going anywhere because they’re good, they’re good at what they do and the problems they may have can be addressed with some small updates, and they just keep getting more performance with the updates…”. Now, it’s almost 4pm so you better git gone and think about what I’ve said while I get ready to sit down to my dinner…
-Enjoy!

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The Oracle Brings News of Change…

September 26, 2019

Oracle releases Java 13 and things are changing!

All jokes of ominous soothsaying and portents aside, Oracle has released Java 13 with a promise of updates every six months. This is kind of a big deal because they are famous for releasing updates every 3 years, up until about 2017…

This article goes into more detail and provides a little historical content too, but let’s focus on a few things; mainly two new features:

Switch Expressions: This feature “extends switch statements so they can be used as a statement or as an expression.”*

Text Block:The Text Blocks feature is designed to simplify writing Java programs by easily expressing strings that span several lines of source code without escape sequences.”*

There is the caveat that these are ‘preview features’, which means they may be removed in the future at some point or not, but this coupled with other improvements has given Oracle the image of coming out of the gate swinging.

Which brings us to the big question, should you learn Java in 2019?
“Why not, you can’t lose. If you want to get jobs in the enterprise/android development, Java is going to be good for a long time. …And if for some reason an asteroid hits the earth and Java starts tanking in terms of popularity, you will have the [nerd] background to be able to move to any language you want.”
This of course referring to the fact that Java is one of those big languages that has inspired so many other languages after it, and as such has many roots (for lack of a better term), in so many other languages that learning those other languages when you have a competent understanding of Java makes it so much easier. “…Java teaches you all these different concepts, best coding practices and so forth, which carries over 102% into any other language.”

The Vlog goes into some more detail and is worth a look. Plus, we’ve teamed up with InMotion hosting for a really amazing offer where they pay for you to take our courses and learn how to become a web developer. Links to all these offers are below.
-Enjoy!

*: To quote Liam Tung’s ZDnet article (link above).

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Am I Too Stupid to Learn Java?

September 19, 2019

Is Java easy to learn or am I just not good at programming?

First of all, I think we can all agree: Awwww, muffin, no!
Second, “99% of the time, when you’re running into problems…learning a programming language -especially Java- it’s normal for everybody and 99% of the time you just have to give yourself some time and a chance.”

Let’s look at some potential hurdles:
1- The beginning is always the hardest: I think this applies to almost everything in the human experience, but even more so with all things programming/coding. “…What you have to essentially do is literally train your brain to think and process information in a totally different way.” Of course there’s going to be mistakes, and you may not understand everything, but press on and it will eventually ‘click’; and things will fall into place.
2- Pace yourself: You will learn infinitely more by committing yourself to 20 minutes a day vs. a 5 hour burnout-a-thon. “You should write at least 20 minutes of code a day, even if you don’t understand the code -make errors, break it, fuss around with it, etc- you gotta get through that initial hurdle where you don’t understand …Once you do, the whole world opens up to you and it becomes much easier.”
3- Things take time/Rest period: To assimilate the knowledge you’ve gathered, you need rest. Your brain needs time to ‘frame’ that knowledge (for lack of a better term). We need only turn to that modern day renaissance man, Arnold Schwarzenegger for advice… “I saw a video recently asking him about training, …and he said… the thing you shouldn’t do is over-train. Same thing with learning code.” Bottom line: rest is as important as learning.
4- <Optional/Caution> Consider your teacher: This is a bit murky and we advise serious caution here, but, “a lot of these coding boot camps are taught by people who don’t know how to teach. It’s just the facts: teaching is a skill, it’s a talent -people go to school for years to learn how to teach…”. If you’re seriously feeling like the material is out of your ‘grasp’, that might be the answer. Please exercise caution, though…
5- Consider the material/Baby steps: We’ve heard the old adage, ‘walk before you run’. Walking is an easier thing to learn, which then lends itself really well (synergistically) to learning to run. By the same token, “…Java is not the first [choice to learn], in my opinion, as a programming language. Why? Because Java; though it’s a powerful language, that power comes with complexity -there’s a lot of things you have to account for when you’re writing Java code that you don’t have to account for if you’re writing Python or JavaScript, PHP or even RUBY [there you go, RUBY!]”. There are other easier languages to learn that later lend themselves well (again, synergy) to learning Java. Baby steps…

So there you have it. The VLOG goes into way more detail, including listing some of the easier, more synergistic languages to learn instead of the ‘Java jump’.
Also, and I hate to do this but <Shameless Self Promotion>, we offer courses that take advantage of both coding experience AND teaching experience every step of the way. Check it out (links at the bottom).

The thing to remember is you’re not stupid, sometimes you just need to take it easy on yourself, give yourself a break, and be patient. Enjoy more sweet scenery of MTL at the end of this VLOG… Ye gods! Just look at all that green in the background.
-Enjoy!

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The [Jet]Brains of the Operation…

August 22, 2019

The state of the ‘developer ecosystem’ in 2019 by software development company of note: JetBrains.

In the beginning of 2019, JetBrains -a software company whose tools are geared towards software developers and project managers- polled almost 7,000 developers to identify the State of the ‘developer ecosystem’. The resulting article can be found here, in all its glory, but we thought we’d break it down for ya and give you some of our thoughts…

-Java is the most popular language. “Most developers will use multiple languages, so …it’s kinda silly to get caught up in what’s the most [popular].

-JavaScript is the most used overall language. “That makes sense because JavaScript’s in the web browser, if you’re doing React, Angular, if you’re doing a basic website, you’re going to be using JavaScript.”

-‘Go’ is the most promising programming language. “I would put ‘Go’ on a ‘perhaps to learn’ list. …The top languages to learn are HTML, CSS, JavaScript, Python…”.

-TL;DR.“One thing that you see across all the surveys, that JavaScript, Java, Python, HTML, CSS … SQL, these are all coding languages and in some cases programming languages that are always at the top or near the top of the stack. And another takeaway that were on all the surveys is that the web stack is still by far dominant.”

The VLOG goes into more detail, with more educated extrapolations and a sweet scenic boat or canoe ride.
-Enjoy!

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Romancing the Stone

August 14, 2019

Should You TAKE the Ruby Job? Also Is Java Dead?

We make fun of Ruby a lot here: 1. because it’s fun and 2. … …okay, it’s just fun really, but a question did come up recently from an individual who was offered a job working with Ruby on Rails. They come from a PHP – Laravel background and while they don’t know how to use Ruby, per se, their potential employer also offered to pay them while they learn it. So the question was do they take the job knowing that the use of Ruby on Rails has diminished or should they look for something else?

Now Ruby aside, we’d like to answer this question in general terms if you ever find yourself in a situation like this and you’re on the fence…
“If you don’t have other work and the job is high paying, why not? …A language or framework does not define you as a programmer… you [just] happen to be using those tools at that particular time”.
Now, specifically regarding Ruby jobs: “…it’s not gonna disappear over night and in fact we’ll probably see Ruby development for the next five years, at least, so …you do that for one year, two years, 3 years; what have you…”

Another question we’ve been getting recently is if Java is dead? With Google making the switch to Kotlin for app development and Oracle charging for Java licensing, what will be happening to Java jobs?
“Does that mean the whole Java-Android development is going to collapse overnight? Probably not: it won’t, it’ll probably take a couple of years.”
That being said, “if you’re writing code for your android app using Java, you’ll be able to transition into Kotlin very, very quickly.”

Check out the VLOG for a more sensible and detailed answers to these questions, and remember, “you cannot lose learning any programming language.”
-Enjoy!

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Google Chooses Kotlin Over Java!

August 9, 2019

The tech giant will still support Java but Kotlin is king for Android development.

A quick snippet to be sure, but Google has announced that when it comes to Android development, going forward it will use Kotlin. There will still be support for Java, “…but in terms of documentation, new libraries and so fourth…they said, ‘that’s it! Kotlin is our beast’.”

Without sounding like a broken record (probably a dated reference…), this does go back to what we were saying about a language that is easy to write in, generally gets more use/support and ends up winning out over more verbose/heavy languages. “Kotlin is an easier language to write in, it’s far more productive so…if you are looking for native Android development (and that I think is going to diminish over time…), …then I would lean towards Kotlin.”

The VLOG goes onto mention other casualties in the “simplicity wars” of languages and frameworks, like Apple’s ‘objective C’ being replaced by Swift. It’s worth a look just for the nostalgia factor alone.
-Enjoy!

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Top 7 Programming Languages on Github in 2019

August 6, 2019

GitHub is a good indicator of how popular programming languages are.

GitHub is an American company that provides hosting for software development version control using Git and it is a subsidiary of Microsoft.
The article we got this list from is here and it’s pretty much the usual suspects…

Check out the VLOG for our take on the list and a little bit of info on the entries.
-Enjoy!

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Should you Build Java Desktop Apps?

July 18, 2019

We’ve touched on this before in past VLOGS but maybe you haven’t seen that one or you want a more up-to-date take on this subject.

So, short answer: Java is really best for web application development, and Android client development. It never took off for desktop applications (we go into more detail in the VLOG).

If you don’t believe us, check out the job market. We would venture to guess that very little to zero jobs are going to have you building desktops apps with JAVA; “JAVA is not client-side, …it is server-side programming”.

The VLOG comes equipped with not only my lovable mug crooning to you about all the finer points about this, but I also offer solutions to in forms of other languages and options that will optimize your time and output for creating desktop apps. You should check it out, it’s less than 4 minutes!

Enjoy!

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Thanks!

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Java for Apps in 2019

May 21, 2019

First things first, a kick-ass opening for this vlog with a (literally, for those afraid of heights) breath-taking view of Montreal, and then back into the “studio” to check out my rig (drums), all to a slick tune in the background. Maybe we’ll call this segment, “Weeee, so fly.”

But let’s dive right into it… Should you use JAVA for back end web app development?

A very specific question deserves a very specific answer: “At the end of the day you have to always judge your technology stacks based on both technical implications of the choice and market implications.”

Technology implications: Do you have experience with the language you’re using? Are you comfortable as programmer? “It depends how nerdy you are, if you are very comfortable writing code, you’re very comfortable as a developer and you’ve done web apps before, yeah, JAVA, could be a good choice, but you gotta consider more than just the technical aspects of the language…”

In terms of market implications: “…are there jobs there? Is there a long road ahead for that particular technology stack?”
Now, there are plenty of jobs in JAVA but they tend to be in or with larger businesses/ organizations. Even with smaller businesses or freelance work “JAVA would not be my first, second, or third choice…”.

Check out the video for a super detailed answer to this question and the more broad lesson that we’re trying to teach: What can you do Vs. what will the market pay you for. Also, did you find our RUBY diss(es)? Oh, yeah, there might be more than one!
Enjoy!

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The Jabba About Java

March 27, 2019

Hard to learn, easy to write … but slow to code with

Full disclosure: I love Java and in some ways, it can be easier to write than faster-to-write languages like JavaScript, Python and PHP. That being said, I wouldn’t use JAVA today in most situations… I know, I know, I can hear the rage-typing right now as the JAVA cavalry sweeps down the hill, charging towards me, but hear me out…

It’s hard to learn, even compared to other languages (like PYTHON, JAVAscript or PHP). It’s hard because “…you have to declare everything. …You have to explicitly write out everything your code is doing. …There’s a lot less things done automatically for you.” Which can be good: as a programmer that means there’s a lot less errors creeping in because there’s not really any “implied coding” (explanation in the video), BUT the coding you do write is super-detailed and verbose.
ALSO: It’s dog-slow at run time when writing desktop applications (never mind mobile apps).

-Totally dating myself here- JAVA was a great language for it’s time in the 90’s. “Because when you wrote JAVA it just worked…and it was very consistent. …JAVAscript: relative to JAVA was very inconsistent …it had some really weird, wonky behaviors and it could cause some really stupid little bugs that could cause you to pull your hair out trying to chase them down in JAVAscript, whereas you didn’t have that occur with JAVA.” I’m also not saying that JAVAscript is bad, in fact most companies toady are leaning towards lighter, faster languages and JAVAscript fits that build (especially when compared to JAVA).

So there you have it, from a guy that loves JAVA. It’s super verbose and heavily detailed in the writing (which also means less errors because you’re being explicit), and that writing code takes much more time, much more time means much more work and money/cost: “I wouldn’t do it.”

Check out the video for a more in-depth explanation PLUS what’s coming up with us with STUDIOWEB and other fundamental stuff we’re working on; super exciting stuff!

Enjoy!!

My popular courses:
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