This week's book giveaway is in the Servlets forum.
We're giving away four copies of Murach's Java Servlets and JSP and have Joel Murach on-line!
See this thread for details.
The moose likes IDEs, Version Control and other tools and the fly likes Is Visual Age for Java going to die? Big Moose Saloon
  Search | Java FAQ | Recent Topics | Flagged Topics | Hot Topics | Zero Replies
Register / Login


Win a copy of Murach's Java Servlets and JSP this week in the Servlets forum!
JavaRanch » Java Forums » Engineering » IDEs, Version Control and other tools
Bookmark "Is Visual Age for Java going to die?" Watch "Is Visual Age for Java going to die?" New topic
Author

Is Visual Age for Java going to die?

Karen Gomes
Ranch Hand

Joined: Aug 25, 2003
Posts: 60
Hello friends,
I just came across an article on the IBM site stating that they will not support VAJ henceforth. Does anyone have any idea abt this?
Also how is VAJ when used in live projects now? I have used VAJ 3.0 when it was released and then didnt get to work on it again.
Cheers,
Karen
Ilja Preuss
author
Sheriff

Joined: Jul 11, 2001
Posts: 14112
Visual Age is replaced by Eclipse/WSAD, as far as I know.


The soul is dyed the color of its thoughts. Think only on those things that are in line with your principles and can bear the light of day. The content of your character is your choice. Day by day, what you do is who you become. Your integrity is your destiny - it is the light that guides your way. - Heraclitus
Phil Chuang
Ranch Hand

Joined: Feb 15, 2003
Posts: 251
and thank goodness- I had used VAJ 3.x on a project, and it was pure torture... Just so incredibly buggy and bloated, hindered productivity more than helped.
Ilja Preuss
author
Sheriff

Joined: Jul 11, 2001
Posts: 14112
Actually, I liked working with VAJ. Eclipse is ways better, of course...
Jeroen Wenting
Ranch Hand

Joined: Oct 12, 2000
Posts: 5093
Originally posted by Phil Chuang:
and thank goodness- I had used VAJ 3.x on a project, and it was pure torture... Just so incredibly buggy and bloated, hindered productivity more than helped.

Exactly the same experience here with both the 2.x and 3.x releases.
Productivity improved tremendously when we switched away from it (not to mention we didn't loose hours of work several times a week when the common repository once again got corrupted beyond any means of recovery.


42
Phil Chuang
Ranch Hand

Joined: Feb 15, 2003
Posts: 251
Originally posted by Jeroen Wenting:

not to mention we didn't loose hours of work several times a week when the common repository once again got corrupted beyond any means of recovery.

I hear ya - the WSAD/CVS or WSAD/Rational solution is much better.
Joe Pluta
Ranch Hand

Joined: Jun 23, 2003
Posts: 1376
Originally posted by Karen Gomes:
I just came across an article on the IBM site stating that they will not support VAJ henceforth. Does anyone have any idea abt this?

This is absolutely true. VAJ is being "sunsetted" in favor of Eclipse, and more specifically, the WebSphere Studio product line. I've managed to migrate all my projects there, and frankly I'm thrilled. I use WDSC, and even though it requires a high-end workstation, the productivity is enormous.
WebSphere Studio is an all-in-one IDE, allowing not only Java development but really all aspects of web application development. Take a look at my company's website. This was done entirely in WDSC in about 40 hours total. The bulk of the work was one long weekend.
The ability to edit not only Java, but HTML, CSS, JSP, and so on all in the same tool is great. The ability to debug from servlet to JSP to bean is phenomenal. It's no surprise, though, that the debugging is so powerful - the same folks that wrote VAJ (Object Technology International) did the bulk of the work on Eclipse/WebSphere Studio.
Joe
Phil Chuang
Ranch Hand

Joined: Feb 15, 2003
Posts: 251
Now if only someone could make a plugin for eclipse/tomcat that worked just as easily as websphere !
Karen Gomes
Ranch Hand

Joined: Aug 25, 2003
Posts: 60
Thank you friends. I had no idea about Eclipse replacing VAJ(for good). This discussion was truely very helpful. Thank you everyone.
Are there any good references for Eclipse? What books would you suggest for Eclipse? Are there no online books freely available?
Thanks a million,
Karen
Joe Pluta
Ranch Hand

Joined: Jun 23, 2003
Posts: 1376
Both the Shavor book (The Java Developer's Giode to Eclipse) and the Gallardo book (Eclipse in Action: A Guide for the Java Developer) are good reference books. Both are geared a bit more towards people who are planning to design their own plug-ins. My book, Eclipse Step by Step, is a one-sitting introduction to the features of Eclipse from the perspective of someone who's going to use the tool. You can literally go through the book in one sitting, if you're so inclined. It got nine horseshoes here at the ranch . It may be a little basic for you as a VAJ professional, but it will introduce you to everything you need to get productive with Eclipse very quickly.
Joe
Ilja Preuss
author
Sheriff

Joined: Jul 11, 2001
Posts: 14112
Eclipse also comes with a good online help and a quite responsive online community.
Dan Kehn
Dastardly Dan the Author
Ranch Hand

Joined: Jun 11, 2003
Posts: 120
Originally posted by Joe Pluta:
Both the Shavor book (The Java Developer's Guide to Eclipse) and the Gallardo book (Eclipse in Action: A Guide for the Java Developer) are good reference books. Both are geared a bit more towards people who are planning to design their own plug-ins.

In all fairness, Part I of our book and Gallardo's barely mention plug-ins, so it's perhaps more accurate to say our books cover using and extending Eclipse. While it's true that we dedicate over 400 pages to plug-in developers, there is also five introductory chapters to the Eclipse environment itself, the Java development environment, and CVS plus four corresponding detailed exercises -- in total half of our book. These detailed exercises in Part III describe each step in a specific task (e.g., writing Java code, debugging Java code, using CVS, and yes, writing and debugging plug-ins).
Here's a representative review from Beth Tibbetts on amazon.com:
This book is unique in its thorough coverage of plug-ins (extending Eclipse: want a new popup menu? code reformatter? Write it yourself!) but don't overlook its good introduction to using the Eclipse IDE itself for developing Java code, as well as a great chapter on using CVS and the Eclipse interface to CVS code respository that is part of the standard download.

That said, I believe that our respective books complement each other in many ways and there is certainly room in the Eclipse readership market for lots of titles with different topic emphasis. The upcoming release of Contributing to Eclipse by Gamma and Beck will add further flavor to the story.
-- Dan


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>)
Dan Kehn
Dastardly Dan the Author
Ranch Hand

Joined: Jun 11, 2003
Posts: 120
Originally posted by Joe Pluta:
Thus, I stand by my characterization of your book as "geared a bit more towards plug-in developers" as entirely accurate. Notice the words "a bit more". Man. I find it quite annoying that I take the time to plug both your book and the Gallardo book, and rather than acknowledge it you go out of your way to nitpick my statement.

I'm sorry, you're right. I agree that our book is not a "newbie's guide" and a lot of its content is oriented towards plug-in developers. My prior post should have said "it's perhaps more complete to say our book covers using and extending Eclipse."
I go to the trouble of pointing this out because the size of our book might lead some potential readers to think that it's a reference, thickly padded with JavaDoc (there is none, except on the CD-ROM). Since you've read it, I hope you'd agree that it also contains chapters of practical instructive value, among them the seven detailed "step-by-step" exercises.
In a related vein, I'm curious what you think of the Sheriff's review:
This book is geared for novice users and is not meant as a reference. The book does not cover any of the Eclipse plug-ins. If you are familiar with IDEs and don't feel lost when using them then this book is probably going to be too basic for you. {my emphasis} But if you are new to IDEs and like a lot of hand holding then this book will help you to work comfortably with the product.

You'll see by reading the thread Dastardly Dan is calling out the Sheriff! that I once crossed the line and questioned a reviewer's comments. The Sheriff was unpersuaded by my arguments. My post did however elicit his specific suggestions on how we could improve subsequent editions and we plan to do so.
-- Dan
Jeroen Wenting
Ranch Hand

Joined: Oct 12, 2000
Posts: 5093
Enough bickering already...
Two Personalities, two (more or less) competing books, one authors' forum to fight it out in private
I've neither book as I'm no beginner in Java and not interested in plugin development (which I gather are the main audiences for your respective writings) so I won't make a statement on the quality of the work of either of you, but if you think your clash here has made me more likely to actually purchase your books you're mistaken.
Joe Pluta
Ranch Hand

Joined: Jun 23, 2003
Posts: 1376
I agree, Jeroen, and I apologize. I really just tried to plug all hree books; and didn't expect the response. It took me by surprise. I have deleted my comments.
Joe
Dan Kehn
Dastardly Dan the Author
Ranch Hand

Joined: Jun 11, 2003
Posts: 120
Jeroen,
I find the discussion interesting. If it drags out or is too heavily focused on authors' interests, I'll propose we move it to a private forum.
Returning to Joe's earlier message, I wonder if his reviewer's comments stem from something I've noted in my past Eclipse teaching experience: An instructor's ability to judge the learning needs of a new student are diminished the more "expert" the instructor becomes. Too often we forget the stumbling blocks of our early learning experience. I was guilty of this when I first joined Jumpstart, thinking the proscriptive exercises that comprised a majority of the course as "monkey at a keyboard" time. However, evaluation after evaluation extolled the value of this approach. In the end, I tried to find a compromise. The "Using the Plug-in Development" exercise (Chapter 33) was my first attempt to blend the two strategies of "high concept" and "high touch," the goal being to have enough instruction so the step-by-step learner doesn't get lost and yet have enough tidbits to prevent the more advanced learner from nodding off.
My article Extend Eclipse's Java Development Tools is another attempt at writing that addresses a wider audience. I like the style of that article and in retrospect would have advocated that our book use it more often. This "discovery learning" style is apparent in the upcoming Contributing to Eclipse book by Beck and Gamma.
BTW, I'm not concerned about "competition" among Eclipse titles. As I said in my first post, there's more than enough Eclipse readership to support a range of topic emphasis and presentation styles. I look forward to the day when there are enough titles to support a full shelf at the bookstore. I vaguely recall that the threshold is around 50-60 titles. Maybe in another year or so? Let's hope so.
-- Dan
Thomas Paul
mister krabs
Ranch Hand

Joined: May 05, 2000
Posts: 13974
I think you might want to take a look at this review:
http://www.javaranch.com/newsletter/August2003/NewsletterAugust2003.jsp#a5
I tend to agree with the author of that review.
"Eclipse: Step by Step" is perfect for the programmer with little or no experience using an IDE.
"Eclipse In Action" is perfect for the person familiar with IDEs but not familiar with Eclipse.
"Java Developer's Guide To Eclipse" is an excellent reference and the best source for developing plug ins.
Which one is right for you depends on what you want the book for. I could easily see a novice making use of all three books.
[ October 13, 2003: Message edited by: Thomas Paul ]

Associate Instructor - Hofstra University
Amazon Top 750 reviewer - Blog - Unresolved References - Book Review Blog
Joe Pluta
Ranch Hand

Joined: Jun 23, 2003
Posts: 1376
My only comment is that you might rethink the need for the phrase "raw beginners" when you talk about someone who has never used an IDE, Tom. I know it might really upset some of my colleagues. Many of them have more programming experience than both of us put together, but have never used an IDE. To label them as "raw beginners" could be construed as being condescending (though I'm sure you don't mean it that way!).
New to IDEs, certainly, but you can be an expert programmer without having ever touched an IDE, and that's one of the primary audiences I intended to reach - accomplished, veteran midrange and mainframe programmers who find themselves having to adapt to a new paradigm (and who just might resent being called newbies).
The reason Eclipse is so important to these people is that it forms the base of IBM's WebSphere Devlopment Studio, which is the tool that will allow the crossover for RPG and COBOL programmers to the exciting world of multi-tool web application development. But your terminology could really be a put-off to these folks.
Knowing both sides of the development world as I do, I know people who are having a hard enough time simply adjusting to the new architectures; they don't need to suffer the added indignity of being labeled "raw beginners".
Joe
Jeroen Wenting
Ranch Hand

Joined: Oct 12, 2000
Posts: 5093
the discussion in itself is interesting, but it was getting more and more personal and purely about the wording of a review and not the books (or Eclipse...) itself.
Dan Kehn
Dastardly Dan the Author
Ranch Hand

Joined: Jun 11, 2003
Posts: 120
For my part, I resign myself to the fact that no single work will satisfy everyone. In my past experience as an instructor, I would shake my head when one student evaluation would praise the class content and presentation as the best they've ever seen while another would condemn it as an abject waste of their time. Were they in the same room as I was?!? Subsequently I consider 80% agreement on the success of an endevor as a runaway victory.
If I disagree with someone's evaluation -- even vehemently -- I want to better understand how and why they came to their opinion. It's pretty rare that I don't gain a useful insight, painful as it may be to hear in some cases.
-- Dan
Thomas Paul
mister krabs
Ranch Hand

Joined: May 05, 2000
Posts: 13974
Originally posted by Joe Pluta:
My only comment is that you might rethink the need for the phrase "raw beginners" ...

When did I say "raw beginner"?
Joe Pluta
Ranch Hand

Joined: Jun 23, 2003
Posts: 1376
Originally posted by Dan Kehn:
For my part, I resign myself to the fact that no single work will satisfy everyone. In my past experience as an instructor, I would shake my head when one student evaluation would praise the class content and presentation as the best they've ever seen while another would condemn it as an abject waste of their time. Were they in the same room as I was?!? Subsequently I consider 80% agreement on the success of an endevor as a runaway victory.

I agree 100%, Dan, which is why I simply deleted my comments. You caught me with what was probably a reasonable comment but I just didn't like the spin. I should have just let it go. In fact, I try hard NOT to review other people's work that is similar to mine, for that very reason.
But I too have found it amazing what people will say. I give seminars and teach labs on web application design, and no matter how hard I try, I'll never get 100% favorable reviews. There seems to always be one person in the bunch who just isn't happy no matter what, and they decide to take it out on you in the review.
It's the same thing with my columns. I write maybe 20 or 30 columns a year and they get almost unanimously good reviews - yet there's one person who, it never fails, insists on logging on simply to give my review a "bad" rating. It's funny now, but at the beginning I was really torqued.
Anyway, no hard feelings. I'm going to go back to my philosophy of not comparing our books. And the next time I plug your book, do me the favor of sending any comments in private so that I can address them? That way we can avoid the rather unseemly discourse that went on earlier. Or if you can't help yourself, then just let me know and I won't plug your work anymore .
Joe
Dan Kehn
Dastardly Dan the Author
Ranch Hand

Joined: Jun 11, 2003
Posts: 120
Originally posted by Joe Pluta:
Anyway, no hard feelings. I'm going to go back to my philosophy of not comparing our books. And the next time I plug your book, do me the favor of sending any comments in private so that I can address them? That way we can avoid the rather unseemly discourse that went on earlier. Or if you can't help yourself, then just let me know and I won't plug your work anymore .
Joe

No problem! I don't mind a little contention if some good insights come from it. Your comments about how a reviewer can inadvertently alienate those they wish to inform applies equally well to all writers. Kyle Brown, author of Enterprise Java Programming with IBM WebSphere, gave me a similar good piece of advice: You must continually give your audience good reasons to keep reading because you ask for one of their most precious resources -- their time. That's part of the reason I bristle when I hear our book described as "a reference." In some circles, that's synonymous with "dry reading material that one suffers in order to find a desired piece of information." While a more callous reviewer might apply that particular meaning to portions of our book (*), it wasn't our intent and we promise to improve it in subsequent editions.
-- Dan
(*) None of my chapters, needless to say!
Thomas Paul
mister krabs
Ranch Hand

Joined: May 05, 2000
Posts: 13974
Originally posted by Dan Kehn:
(*) None of my chapters, needless to say!
In fact, if it was up to me I would have thrown away all the other chapters and just published your chapters.
[ October 13, 2003: Message edited by: Thomas Paul ]
Howard Kushner
author
Ranch Hand

Joined: Sep 19, 2003
Posts: 361
Originally posted by Karen Gomes:
Hello friends,
I just came across an article on the IBM site stating that they will not support VAJ henceforth. Does anyone have any idea abt this?
Also how is VAJ when used in live projects now? I have used VAJ 3.0 when it was released and then didnt get to work on it again.
Cheers,
Karen

I cried real tears when I heard the news. I had been using VAJ since version 2.0 in 1999
Then I heard about Eclipse and was skeptical. And that's putting it mildly...
But now I am exuberant with WebSphere Studio. It has everything that VAJ had plus everything that WebSphere Studio "Classic" had, and tons more!
17 persectives at last count! Whoa Nelly!
Rejoice! We now have a real WTE, not some Smalltalk simulation, plus Struts, Web Services, XML, and so on, and so on...


Howard Kushner<br />IBM Certified Enterprise Developer - WebSphere Studio Application Developer V5.0<br />IBM Certified Advanced System Administrator - WebSphere Application Server V5.0<br />IBM Certified Solution Developer - Web Services with WebSphere Studio V5.1<br /><a href="http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/tg/detail/-/1931182108/" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">Developing J2EE Applications with WebSphere Studio</a> my Certification Study Guide for IBM Test 287
 
I agree. Here's the link: http://aspose.com/file-tools
 
subject: Is Visual Age for Java going to die?
 
Similar Threads
Java or .Net for Windows Desktop Apps?
How to export and deploy EJB from VAJ to WAS
Nobody mentioned jEdit?
Help! Struts in VAJ: servlet container restarted every action
Developing under VAJ & compiling using Javac