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Approach to SCJD exam and Habibi et al's book?

John Cogan
Ranch Hand

Joined: Jan 22, 2003
Posts: 32
I'm studying for the SCJD and I recently got my URLyBird hotel room reservation project from Sun. I also bought "The Sun Certified Java Developer Exam with J2SE 1.4" by Habibi et al. This book runs through a sample DVD rental project.
My approach is to go through the development of the DVD rental project and at the same time develop the reservation project.
However, I find that the starting point for the DVD rental project is quite a bit down the line from the URLyBird reservation project. The DVD rental project already has a DOS application which pretty much functions as a small rental application. However, SUN's URLyBird reservation project just comes with flat db file and a set of instructions for an interface.
Many design decisions appear to have been already taken and not explained in the DVD rental project.
My question is, where earlier versions of SUN�s exam a lot more developed hence this discrepancy?

----------------<br />SCJP, SCWCD
Max Habibi
town drunk
( and author)

Joined: Jun 27, 2002
Posts: 4118
Hi John,
Not only the early versions, bu the one what was in place until just a few months ago. But yes, that's exactly what happened. However, you'll still get a lot out of stepping through the choices: the GUI version is a complete revamp of the original, so we should still be addressing each design issue point by point. OTOH, I'm working on a new sample project now: would you like to volunteer for the beta?
[ August 20, 2003: Message edited by: Max Habibi ]

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John Cogan
Ranch Hand

Joined: Jan 22, 2003
Posts: 32
Hi Max,
Thank you for replying.
I have very little developer experience (despite having got both the SCJP and SCJWP exams which are exercises in memory) and my primary goal is to use the SCJD exam to get this experience. I think it is an excellent exam.
I started by trying to massage URLyBird to the same stage as dennyDVD, that is a working DOS application. I am pretty uncomfortable about this because there are a lot of decisions being made that I wish I had a better explanation for. I was then going to continue on with the rest of your book. Is this a good approach?
Quote �the GUI version is a complete revamp of the original�
Is the GUI side also different?
I would be very interested in volunteering for the beta program of your new sample project. How does it work? Does it come with explanatory text like the book? Is it a rewrite of the book for the new exam? What type of feedback to you require?
Best regards,
Bharat Ruparel
Ranch Hand

Joined: Jul 30, 2003
Posts: 493
Hello Max,
I would like to volunteer. What would you want me to do?

Bharat Ruparel
Ranch Hand

Joined: Jul 30, 2003
Posts: 493
Hello John,
I started working on the URLy Bird exam about a month ago. Initially, I thought that I will breeze through it, but that was a naive assumption. I also felt a bit overwhelmed like you are feeling, but then started a lot of "focused" reading and research.
This exam is a bit different that Java 2 Programmers Certification or Java Web Component Developer certifications that I got by investing a month for each. I found that if I had Kathy Sierra's text for the Programmer's certification and Hemant DeshMukh's text for the Web Component Developer's exam, I really didn't need to refer to anything else and ended up doing quite well.
Max's book, on the other hand, gives you a very good running start. But it seems like you still have to do a lot of research and learning using other books and forums like this on JavaRanch. So don't let this feeling overwhelm you. It will pass with work. My suggestion is that you start working inside out (as Andrew suggested in another thread). Start by coding the RandomAccessFile maintenance routines so that you can read data from it, write to it, update it selectively without worrying about threads.
Once you have gotten that far, now is the time to start looking into threading/locking issues which is where I am now. You will have to refactor your existing code, but that is life. Next, start looking into RMI/sockets whichever approach you decide to take. It seems like most people are favoring RMI over sockets (myself included) primarily because it is less work.
Next, you will start looking into GUI modeling, where, as Max points out, you can leverage most of the design decisions made in his book (I am planning on doing that).
Most of all, make a regular habit of being on this forum everyday and the fellow members will pull you along (before you know, you will be doing the same and enjoying it!).
Hope this helps.
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