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Welcome Authors!

Thomas Paul
mister krabs
Ranch Hand

Joined: May 05, 2000
Posts: 13974
Let's give a big JavaRanch welcome to the authors of this week book giveaway. Sherry Shavor, Jim D'Anjou, Dan Kehn, Scott Fairbrother, John Kellerman, and Pat McCarthy are the authors of, "The Java Developer's Guide to Eclipse" from Addison-Wesley.
Our reviewer (me) had this to say, "It covers not just the basics, but virtually everything you need to know to write your own plug-ins. Whether you wish to code a new toolbar, editor, specialized view, or wizard, it is all covered in this section. With this book you will be writing plug-ins in a fraction of the time you would have otherwise spent." The book earned a very good rating of 8 horseshoes.
So say hello to our authors and start a new thread with all your questions!


Associate Instructor - Hofstra University
Amazon Top 750 reviewer - Blog - Unresolved References - Book Review Blog
Kenneth A. Kousen
gunslinger & author
Ranch Hand

Joined: Sep 18, 2002
Posts: 89
    
    5
I was browsing this book at Barnes and Noble the other day, and it looks great. I especially was interested in the SWT tutorial in the appendix.
I'm probably going to buy it, but I wanted to wait to see if I win it here first.


Kenneth A. Kousen, Ph.D. (assorted certs), President, Kousen IT, Inc.
Author of Making Java Groovy - http://www.kousenit.com
Dan Kehn
Dastardly Dan the Author
Ranch Hand

Joined: Jun 11, 2003
Posts: 120
Originally posted by Kenneth Kousen:
I was browsing this book at Barnes and Noble the other day, and it looks great. I especially was interested in the SWT tutorial in the appendix.
I'm probably going to buy it, but I wanted to wait to see if I win it here first.

SWT appendix? Sounds like you're referring to Eclipse in Action. If so, sorry to say that you're a week late for the giveaway . If you're referring to our book, The Java Developer's Guide to Eclipse, you've still got a chance. Our book covers the SWT in Chapter 10 ("SWT: A Lean Mean, Widget Machine") and includes examples on the CD-ROM.
-- Dan
[ July 15, 2003: Message edited by: Dan Kehn ]

Co-author of <a href="http://www.jdg2e.com" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">The Java Developer's Guide to Eclipse</a>, 2nd Edition<br />(Yahoo group <a href="http://groups.yahoo.com/group/JDG2E/" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">JDG2E</a>)
Frank Daly
Ranch Hand

Joined: Mar 31, 2000
Posts: 139
I too am interested in this book and will probably buy it, well get my boss to buy it, but would prefer to win it. Seems incredible that such a good piece of software can be released for nothing.
Frank
Dan Kehn
Dastardly Dan the Author
Ranch Hand

Joined: Jun 11, 2003
Posts: 120
Originally posted by Frank Daly:
Seems incredible that such a good piece of software can be released for nothing.
Frank

taking my IBMer hat off for a moment... IBM labs independently spent tons of money over the years effectively redeveloping a base framework over and over again for their various application development products. It just made good financial sense to standardize IBM's offerings to a common platform. It also results in higher user satisfaction because their tools work together. So IBM isn't really giving Eclipse away for "free", since every plug-in created by the Eclipse software community pays back to IBM's investment -- and by extension, anyone else who buys into the Eclipse vision.
IMHO, it's a win-win situation for commercial interests and developers. As an aside, I worked on Smalltalk for years where the source was included from day one. Once you've tasted that kind of freedom, you never go back.
-- Dan
Ashik Uzzaman
Ranch Hand

Joined: Jul 05, 2001
Posts: 2370

Welcome authors!


Ashik Uzzaman
Senior Member of Technical Staff, Salesforce.com, San Francisco, CA, USA.
Thomas Paul
mister krabs
Ranch Hand

Joined: May 05, 2000
Posts: 13974
Hi Dan,
Please change your display name to be your real name! We want everyone to know who you are!
You can change your display name here:
http://www.coderanch.com/forums/user/edit
Thanks,
Tom

[ July 15, 2003: Message edited by: Thomas Paul ]
Dan Kehn
Dastardly Dan the Author
Ranch Hand

Joined: Jun 11, 2003
Posts: 120
Originally posted by Thomas Paul:
Please change your display name to be your real name! We want everyone to know who you are!

We thought we'd share the same login for this promotion, hence why you're seeing only "Eclipse Guide". If this is a faux pas, let us know. Besides, with one click the link in the signature, I bet JavaRanch members will figure out real fast who's who (hint, hint).
-- Dan
[ July 15, 2003: Message edited by: Eclipse Guide ]
Thomas Paul
mister krabs
Ranch Hand

Joined: May 05, 2000
Posts: 13974
We would prefer if everyone uses their own id's. That way we can get to know each of you as separate individuals! Besides, what if a couple of you decide to keep coming back after the promotion? You won't have a cool id that says "author"!
Dan Kehn
Dastardly Dan the Author
Ranch Hand

Joined: Jun 11, 2003
Posts: 120
Originally posted by Thomas Paul:
We would prefer if everyone uses their own id's.

Sure thing Sheriff. We don't want no problems.
-- Dan
Thomas Paul
mister krabs
Ranch Hand

Joined: May 05, 2000
Posts: 13974
By the way... congratulations! I was just over on amazon and your book was ranked as #5 in the Java bestsellers list. "Eclipse in Action" was #13. Of course, that is because of this promotion!
Dan Kehn
Dastardly Dan the Author
Ranch Hand

Joined: Jun 11, 2003
Posts: 120
I suppose that a JavaRanch yeehaw! is in order? You folks must have too much fun at work, the possible metaphors are endless.
-- Dan
Sherry Shavor
Author
Greenhorn

Joined: Jul 15, 2003
Posts: 7
Hello. I'm quite excited to see so much discussion already out here on our book, The Java Developer's Guide to Eclipse. I see some of you are trying to decide what Eclipse book will be right for you. Of course, it is the free one that will be won by some lucky rancher. But just in case, you don't win one, I thought I'd share some philosophy from the author point of view on what led to the book and its style. When Eclipse first started, (way before beta 1), a few of us started building education material to get the IBM development group (and later customers) going on Eclipse. Each time we taught a group of folks we incorporated the questions we heard, the mistakes people made or what they found tricky to learn into our material to make it easier for the next class to grasp. After lots of sweat, but before we knew it, we had hundreds of pages of material based on teaching hundreds of programmers at all skill levels. What we found worked best is to describe the concepts with lots of chunks of code samples. Then, be quiet and let the students have some hands on practice with clear instructions so they get the knowledge quickly without frustration. Then, always leave them with several files of working code to cut and paste to their hearts content back at the office. It is this style that we hope we have brought to you. The chapters parallel our lectures and are loaded with screen captures and code (just ask our production editor), Part 3 of our book contains step by step instructions that should make everyone feel comfortable. In addition, we included all our working samples on the CD with Javadoc to accompany it. So if reading about it, then doing it, then being provided lots of code to reuse seems like it fits your learning style, we hope you consider our book.
Sherry Shavor
[ July 15, 2003: Message edited by: Sherry Shavor ]

<a href="http://www.awprofessional.com/titles/0321159640" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">http://www.awprofessional.com/titles/0321159640</a>
Thomas Paul
mister krabs
Ranch Hand

Joined: May 05, 2000
Posts: 13974
Hi Sherry... the part of the book that I really thought made your book stand out were the excercises. It's fine to read about something but doing the excercises and seeing the thing actually work really made Eclipse easy to use.
[ July 16, 2003: Message edited by: Thomas Paul ]
Stefan Wagner
Ranch Hand

Joined: Jun 02, 2003
Posts: 1923

Hi,
Let's give a big JavaRanch welcome to the authors of this week book giveaway.
thread with all your questions!
Can you tell, how long it will take, till this book is translated to german?
(And why this Ranch-Site -Post a Reply - Window is so small? I feel claustrophobical.)


http://home.arcor.de/hirnstrom/bewerbung
Prashanth menon
Ranch Hand

Joined: Feb 20, 2001
Posts: 65
The section that sounds interesting is
Extending Eclipse, the plug-in architecture, and Eclipse frameworks.
I like this opportunity to compete for the book.
Steve Morrow
Ranch Hand

Joined: May 22, 2003
Posts: 657

Welcome, guys! I look forward to this book as well - any help I can get with Eclipse is appreciated! )
Dan Kehn
Dastardly Dan the Author
Ranch Hand

Joined: Jun 11, 2003
Posts: 120
Originally posted by Stefan Wagner:
Can you tell, how long it will take, till this book is translated to German?

The publisher is actively looking into translations, German included. Japanese is already planned.
-- Dan
[ July 17, 2003: Message edited by: Dan Kehn ]
Lasse Koskela
author
Sheriff

Joined: Jan 23, 2002
Posts: 11962
    
    5
Can you tell, how long it will take, till this book is translated to german?

<off-topic>Stefan, do you have an idea of the proportion of IT books being translated to German? I'm asking because the number of books being translated to Finnish (my native language) is something very small. I'm already used to read my professional literature in English and outright avoid translations because of their low quality.</off-topic>


Author of Test Driven (2007) and Effective Unit Testing (2013) [Blog] [HowToAskQuestionsOnJavaRanch]
Dan Kehn
Dastardly Dan the Author
Ranch Hand

Joined: Jun 11, 2003
Posts: 120
Originally posted by Lasse Koskela:
<off-topic>Stefan, do you have an idea of the proportion of IT books being translated to German?</off-topic>

Allow me to jump in and share my "thimble full" of knowledge on the subject. I've worked with other authors and it seems that the first translation considered is Japanese (e.g., Practical Java). There is an upcoming Eclipse title in German, Java-Entwicklung mit Eclipse 2.
-- Dan
[ July 16, 2003: Message edited by: Dan Kehn ]
Sherry Shavor
Author
Greenhorn

Joined: Jul 15, 2003
Posts: 7
The fact that we are already going to be translated into Japanese is a very positive sign that we will be translated into other languages. Given the popularity of Eclipse in Germany, it is a possibility, but we don't have any plans to date.
Francis Siu
Ranch Hand

Joined: Jan 04, 2003
Posts: 867
welcome all the authors
please read the topic
what is the major advantage in Eclipse?
thanks

[ July 18, 2003: Message edited by: siu chung man ]

Francis Siu
SCJP, MCDBA
Kenneth A. Kousen
gunslinger & author
Ranch Hand

Joined: Sep 18, 2002
Posts: 89
    
    5
Originally posted by Eclipse Guide:

SWT appendix? Sounds like you're referring to Eclipse in Action. If so, sorry to say that you're a week late for the giveaway . If you're referring to our book, The Java Developer's Guide to Eclipse, you've still got a chance. Our book covers the SWT in Chapter 10 ("SWT: A Lean Mean, Widget Machine") and includes examples on the CD-ROM.
-- Dan
[ July 15, 2003: Message edited by: Dan Kehn ]

Ugh! I can't believe I referred to the wrong Eclipse book. Sorry about that.
To be honest, I'm probably going to buy both books. I've been a big fan of Eclipse for over a year now, and still keep finding out new things about it.
Glad you're all here.
Dan Kehn
Dastardly Dan the Author
Ranch Hand

Joined: Jun 11, 2003
Posts: 120
Good point. Why not buy every book on Eclipse you can find? It isn't often that you have such an exciting technology and be able to say you've got every reference on the subject in your library.
It will probably be fiscally difficult a year from now. I wonder how long it will take to reach the "critical mass" necessary to get dedicated shelf space. I understand that it requires 50+ titles. One year maybe? I'll go on record as saying about 18 months...
-- Dastardly Dan
Michael Crutcher
Ranch Hand

Joined: Feb 18, 2002
Posts: 48
I bought the book several weeks ago and have read the book cover to cover and tried all of the excercises. I just wanted to let everyone know how good this book is. Seriously, I've purchased and read nearly a hundred technical books in the past several years and this one stands out as one of the best I've ever read.
Anybody who uses eclipse will get something out of this book, although as the title indicates it is primarily geared towards eclipse plugin developers. The first section is dedicated to eclipse users and illuminates many of the useful features that are built into eclipse. The second section of the book is where the real meat is at. This section covers everything you need to know to implement plugins. I was extremely impressed with just how much this book really covers. If you want your hand held for every step, this is not your book. It only presents code snippets, not fully coded examples for each concept. I think this is great, however, because the examples that are included (via the cd) do show full examples of the concepts without wasting valuable page real estate printing every last piece of code. Free of this baggage the book is able to cover considerable ground. If you want an idea of what this book is like go to eclipse.org and look at the articles. The book is like every article included on the website in much more detail, and covers many areas for which no articles have been written.
The SWT tutorial and the examples were also very good. I have a few minor nitpicks: the book was written for eclipse 2.0. Many of the wizard menus shown in the book have changed with version 2.1 (and again I'm sure with 3.0), but if you have some intelligence its not hard to figure out how to follow the examples in 2.1. Secondly I'd like a small section dedicated to getting information from existing views. I often need check information in one view in order to instantiate the model behind another view. The twists and turns of the extensive Eclipse API can make doing this not very intuitive. I've read the Resources section over and over, but I still haven't found the information I need. I eventually figured out some methods that worked after reading a lot of API documentation.
Those are just minor nitpicks, however. Overall I have to say this book is GREAT!! If your are an application builder (especially if you build tools), the power of the eclipse architecture will blow you away. I build tools for a data warehouse and eclipse has transformed my tools from quick-and-dirty tools designed for our specific needs, to near commercial ready plugins.
I can't stress this enough, Eclipse is a BIG deal. Its much more than an IDE. Do yourself a favor and buy this book, you won't regret it.
Michael Crutcher
Texas A&M University
crutcher@tamu.edu
Thomas Paul
mister krabs
Ranch Hand

Joined: May 05, 2000
Posts: 13974
That's a great review. Why not post it on amazon.com to help the authors out?
Michael Crutcher
Ranch Hand

Joined: Feb 18, 2002
Posts: 48
I posted this same message as an Amazon review. I hope it helps the authors sell some books, they deserve it.
Michael Crutcher
Texas A&M University
Dan Kehn
Dastardly Dan the Author
Ranch Hand

Joined: Jun 11, 2003
Posts: 120
Originally posted by Michael Crutcher:
Secondly I'd like a small section dedicated to getting information from existing views. I often need to check information in one view in order to instantiate the model behind another view. The twists and turns of the extensive Eclipse API can make doing this not very intuitive. I've read the Resources section over and over, but I still haven't found the information I need. I eventually figured out some methods that worked after reading a lot of API documentation.{snip}
I can't stress this enough, Eclipse is a BIG deal. Its much more than an IDE. Do yourself a favor and buy this book, you won't regret it.
Michael Crutcher
Texas A&M University
crutcher@tamu.edu

Your point about views, could you elaborate a bit more? I'm not certain what you're after -- view to view synchronization? Eclipse doesn't have a generic solution, only a few specific cases (resource delta notifications, JDT element changes, etc). I assume this was because they wanted to avoid the "notify the world" trap that so many OO frameworks seem to fall into. What solution did you ultimately decide upon to solve your problem?
Thanks for the feedback and the kind words. I look forward to seeing your review on amazon!
-- Dan
vasu maj
Ranch Hand

Joined: Jul 12, 2001
Posts: 395
Welcome authors...

Small question... What is the platform development environment ? Is it going to be part of the IDE itself?
Thanks,
Vasu


What a wonderful world!
Dan Kehn
Dastardly Dan the Author
Ranch Hand

Joined: Jun 11, 2003
Posts: 120
I assume that you're referring to Eclipse's Plug-in Development Environment (PDE). It is a specialized Java perspective that adds some additional views (e.g., Plug-in Registry), editors (e.g., Plug-in Manifest Editor), and preferences (Window > Preferences > PDE) to help plug-in developers use Eclipse to extend Eclipse. It comes with Eclipse as part of the SDK.
That's the small answer.
-- Dan
[ July 21, 2003: Message edited by: Dan Kehn ]
vasu maj
Ranch Hand

Joined: Jul 12, 2001
Posts: 395
A small note of thanks...
I am a great fan of IDEA but I admit that I didn't use eclipse much before except for a few days to compare it with IDEA and by the time I evaluated it we wre already heavily in favour of IDEA so I was biased. What is your valued experience/ opinion? Or would you say they can;t be compared as one is open source and the other is commercial?

Thanks,
Vasu
Joe Pluta
Ranch Hand

Joined: Jun 23, 2003
Posts: 1376
And pretty much on the opposite end of the spectrum is my book, Eclipse Step by Step. Since I come from a midrange background (IBM AS/400-iSeries, green screens, RPG and COBOL), many of my colleagues are not exactly Java gurus, or even aficianados. In fact, there are many who use PCs primarily as EE devices (email and emulation) and find Java and IDEs in general intimidating.
However, IBM is changing the world on them by investing the bulk of its development resources in Eclipse and a set of Eclipse-based tools (known as the WebSphere Development Studio client, or WDSc) which will replace the green screen tools they're using today for development of iSeries applications.
So, whether they like it or not, my colleagues are going to need to learn this stuff. And so my book is basically a completely guided tour (every keystroke, every button) of writing a working application using Eclipse. It's exactly the kind of "handholding for every step" that Michael said the Java Developer's Guide to Eclipse is not.
The interesting thing is that since Eclipse includes no native RPG compiler, I instead walk the reader through a simple Java application that queries a database using JDBC and SWT (I include a free 100% Pure Java SQL database, HSQLDB), so the reader gets the double benefit of actually working with Eclipse AND writing a Java program - thereby hopefully demystifying both.
Reviews I've gotten from the midrange community so far have been very good. The book is a fast, easy read, the examples work, and it's based on version 2.1 of Eclipse. Hopefully we'll get the information straightened out on the online bookstores (Amazon still says 2-3 weeks for delivery, while Barnes and Noble says the book will be published in August, and neither has the cover art - even though the book is available now from the MCPress website and the cover is very nice, thank you ).
I'll be very interested to see what folks in the general Java community have to say. I'm anxious to see what you folks have to say, because it really is training wheels for Eclipse, but that's what a lot of folks in my part of the IT world need.
Joe
Carl Lewis
Greenhorn

Joined: Jul 03, 2003
Posts: 2
Welcome!
Michael Crutcher
Ranch Hand

Joined: Feb 18, 2002
Posts: 48
Dan:
Your point about views, could you elaborate a bit more? I'm not certain what you're after -- view to view synchronization? Eclipse doesn't have a generic solution, only a few specific cases (resource delta notifications, JDT element changes, etc). I assume this was because they wanted to avoid the "notify the world" trap that so many OO frameworks seem to fall into. What solution did you ultimately decide upon to solve your problem?

Here's a brief run down of what I was trying to do. I wrote a series of plugins that automate change management to a large scale database (teradata). Any change to any component of the ETL (extraction transformation load) process effects other components of the process. For example a change to a table name requires that all scripts that reference that table must also be changed.
So the plugins provide a view for source files, a view for scripts, and a view of databases. The source file view and script view are tied to the resource selection in the navigator view, and the database view has an action that allows you to specify a connection to a database. From these views users are able to interact with the components and make changes.
The last view is a changes view. It's a lot like the error log or task view, but contains a list of running changes that happen as a result of user actions. The changes are not directly tied to user action, as a user modification to a value might cause MANY rippling changes throughout the ETL process.
So what I want to know is what is the best way to access the underlying model of the change view from the inside the other views (so that when a user modification creates a set of changes the view can add the changes to the change view model).
I hope that wasn't too confusing. This is what I'm doing right now, and I think that there are probably a lot better ways to do it, but I can't find them.
Here's some code (off the top of my head, but I think its right)

The "lessthan" is because java ranch thinks they are html escape codes and keeps rejecting this post (wierd).
That seems like either a very involved way to get a view, or that I don't understand some fundamental concept. What I meant in my earlier criticism of the book is that I would have liked if there was some more background about how all the parts of the API fit together. There is some discussion of these issues, but I would have loved a chapter with a high level explanation of the major components of the API and how they all fit together. It would save me a lot of fumbling around reading the API trying to figure out what componets of the API I need to use.
Maybe not a fair criticism, as I'm doing some fairly involved things with Eclipse, but just something I was fighting with.
Michael Crutcher
Lance Duncan
Ranch Hand

Joined: Jul 28, 2003
Posts: 39
welcome!
 
I agree. Here's the link: http://aspose.com/file-tools
 
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