Monday, July 26, 2010

Why is it so hard to find a Java developer?

It's that time again. My employer needs another Java software engineer. We are looking for someone familiar with the usual enterprise Java stack: Spring, Hibernate, Tomcat. Pretty vanilla, right? So why is it so hard to find one? The problem is not with the frameworks: these are pretty widely used, and lots of people claim familiarity with them. My problem is the same one I've had for years: it's hard to find candidates who can clearly demonstrate their programming skills.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

The rise of the cattle office

When I blogged about the office environment, I contrasted private offices with cubicles. Whatever their relative advantages, the latter suffered from noise, distraction and lack of privacy. Not long afterward, a colleague pointed me to Martin Fowler's article on team rooms that took these disadvantages and multiplied them:

Guess what this made me think of?


(Photo credit)

Monday, July 19, 2010

Counting down my life

When I wrote TimeForTea for my BlackBerry, I had in mind a countdown timer to let me know when my tea is ready. As it turns out, a countdown timer has a lot more uses than that. I am indebted to my own customers for for their ideas of additional uses of TimeForTea. With room for 9 preset times, you can do a lot more than timing your tea. Looking over the reviews, I found a whole lot of other timing uses, such as:
  • Washing cycle
  • Dryer cycle (no more wrinkled clothes)
  • Lunch break
  • Pizza/Chinese takeout
  • Kids' timeout
  • Kids' video game time
You get the idea. I personally also started using TimeForTea to time when my grill is warmed up. Hey, it's summer.