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How much learning curve

Shama Khan
Ranch Hand

Joined: Aug 14, 2000
Posts: 185
How much learning curve is involved when it comes to programming for small devices?
A head hunter called me for such a position asking for only a minimum one year experience.
I've been programming Java applications (using servlets, jsp, and a bit of xml). How much of a learning curve would there be for me if I have the one year experience required?
Shama


Shama
Mark Herschberg
Sheriff

Joined: Dec 04, 2000
Posts: 6037
Answer: it depends.
Java is java. CLDC/MIDP just provide different sets of classes. As a whole the sets are much smaler than the J2SE. SO if you can do Java, you can do J2ME fairly easily.
From what I've seen, most people who do web development, especially JSP don't necessarily have the same skills as run-of-the-mill Java programmers. Servlet programmers are a step up, but ca range from experienced JSP programmers to well rounded Java deelopers (This is a general comment, I obviously don't know you or your skills.)
The deeper answer is that it depends. Anyone can read a book on Java, and say they are a Java programmer. The good ones have a strong understanding of OOA/OOD, systems design (or other in depth topic), JVM, compilers, and java pitfalls. The same is true with J2ME. If you understand the devices, OS, kVM, etc, you're a better programmer for it. The good news is that this stuff is so new, you're not far behind the people with a "lot" of experience.
--Mark
hershey@eyeshake.com
PS If you want to do wireless Java, send me a resume! :-)
Phil Perkins
Ranch Hand

Joined: Nov 21, 2000
Posts: 40
Hey Matt,
Do you know what the job market for the J2ME is going to look like in the future? Has your company seen any solid prospects as of yet?
Best,
Phil
Matt Midcap
Sheriff

Joined: Jan 07, 1999
Posts: 440
Hi Phil,
Actually I am doing this as a hobby (amongst many). I actually do EJB, Servlets, JSPs and such at work.
Sooo - unfortunately I don't know the answer to this question.
Is there anybody else out there who might know?
Best Regards,
Matt


Best Regards,<br />Matt Midcap
Matt Midcap
Sheriff

Joined: Jan 07, 1999
Posts: 440
You know, I just re-read the entire thread here and are you actually asking Mark the question?
Mark - sounds like you might know... By the way, where is your company located and what do they do?
Matt
Mark Herschberg
Sheriff

Joined: Dec 04, 2000
Posts: 6037
Well, I've never been very good at crystal ball reading (in '93 I said domain names would have no value, since all names are equal :-), but here's my guess.
People like the Gardner group report that by 2002-4 (reports vary) there will be more wireless internet access (cell, PDA) than wired (PC). I'm not convinced that Java makes as much sense as these devices as on PCs (and 'm a Java zealot), but given the number of Java developers and Sun's marketing muscle, I think Java will have a big piece of the pie. I can tell you that recruiters go nuts for wireless people in general. I can also tell you that there will be way more demand for J2ME people in the next 3-5 years than we curently have, so getting into J2ME definately won't hurt. (Of course, if you understand good programming, than you should be able to switch out of J2ME at a moments notice, so you have nothing to lose :-)
Right now the only thing holding back J2ME/developers/wireless is ourselves. We can't make the J2ME specs fast enough. And although pretty much every company wants to move everythng to wireless, there is neither the knowledge base, nor developer experience, nor logistical support, nor infrastructure to really support big projects yet. I suspect over the next few years we'll have a wireless boom, just like we had a dot com boom. Many wireless companies, with bad business plans, getting funding and burning out a few years later (but it'll be 12-24 months before VCs forget todays market).

************************************************************
Shameless plug for my company (thanks to Matt's question :-)
I will say that my company can't hire people fast enough, especially people with J2ME or any wireless expereince. There are hardley any people with J2ME experience! My company is called MobileLogic (the name will change this weekend). I'm in the software group, known as Eyeshake. We make a client-server framework for wireless systems. Our software lets you make wireless applications that work when disconnected. WAP can't. (It's kind of like 1995, HTML vs. Java. WAP is like HTML, when the web server is down, game over. Java lets you do true client side processing, so do we.) We've got a lot of other cool features that I can't go into with a signed NDA. We're located in Boston. We also have a consulting division in NYC.
I'm happy to take questions or resumes :-)

End shameless plug
************************************************************
--Mark
hershey@eyeshake.com
Matt Midcap
Sheriff

Joined: Jan 07, 1999
Posts: 440
Hi Mark,
Good to hear there is a market for J2ME!
I would be interested but I live in Denver, CO. I think Denver would be the next logical place to open an office don't you?
If so my resume will be on it's way!
Best Regards,
Matt
Matt Midcap
Sheriff

Joined: Jan 07, 1999
Posts: 440
Oh yea, a little off the subject but here is how to do the goofy smily things:
http://www.javaranch.com/ubb/smilies.html
Matt
Mark Herschberg
Sheriff

Joined: Dec 04, 2000
Posts: 6037
Matt,
Today's your lucky day! We do have an office in Denver, Colorado! I didn't mention them before becuse I didn't know much about them, but I just went to an all company meeting this weekend, and got a good overview of what they do.
Offically, they are our managed services division, supporting a Network Operations Center. There is a small, but growing group of programmers there, or varying levels of experience. Most don't have much Java experience. I know in the short term they'll be doing some application coding on a mobile device (I can't really say which one or what). Long term they'll be working with my group, but probably form the Denver office. Send me a resume and I'll pass it along!!!
(I specifically avoid using smily's. The only true smiley's are ASCII smiley's :-)
--Mark
hershey@eyeshake.com
Matt Midcap
Sheriff

Joined: Jan 07, 1999
Posts: 440
Hhhmmmmm..., oh..., gee... Tempting, very tempting...
O.k. fine - you talked me into it. I'll get my resume updated and send one out to ya
One question, and I'm sure everyone else here might like to know. Are companies paying as much for this type of technical experiance as they are for say, EJB, Servlets, JDBC, and JSP? That's my specialty stuff right now.
Best Regards,
Matt Midcap
Mark Herschberg
Sheriff

Joined: Dec 04, 2000
Posts: 6037

>One question, and I'm sure everyone else here might like
> to know. Are companies paying as much for this type of
> technical experiance as they are for say, EJB, Servlets,
> JDBC, and JSP? That's my specialty stuff right now.
I don't know about other companies. We generally pay market. That's a vague term, but really, that's the only thing you can do. We don't ahve set pay scales, we pay ased on people's abilities, intelligence, and experience.
Right now I've yet to see a resume with J2ME experience. I've seen various amounts listing EJB, JSP etc. Does it help? It depends.
Lets say someone says they do JSP. If they are simply a web guy, who learned JSP to make better web pages, but don't really know how to program, it doesn't mean much. If they are a true programmer, and just happen to be working in JSP, that's different.
EJBs are usually used in much more complex work than JSPs. However, I've seen a number of resumes (often form consultants) who list a whole bunch of buzz words (EJB, JSP, XML, J2ME, etc). If I see a lot, especially on someone with only 2-3 years of Java experience, what I usually find is that when I press them on it, they haven't really done much, but either spend a week looking into it, or read about it on their own, or worked on a project where someone else used it. (See my post on the Job Discussion mailing lists).
I suspect that the J2ME market will be growing and the demand will outstrip supply in the near term.
Bottom line, I can't speak for anyone other than our Boston office, and we pay competitive. Since there's no J2ME experience, the specifics of what you've done isn't as important to me as how much Java you know in general.
Our Denver office hires independently. But I know the guys there, and can talk to them to find out what they are looking for. (I think it's general Java skills.)
--Mark
hershey@vaultus.com (new name, but the old email still works)
Matt Midcap
Sheriff

Joined: Jan 07, 1999
Posts: 440
Thanks for the info Mark!
I hope I didn't put you on the spot but I didn't know how else to ask (I'm usually direct).
Thanks again,
Matt
Mark Herschberg
Sheriff

Joined: Dec 04, 2000
Posts: 6037
Hey, I'm an engineer, too, so I like direct. Besides, it was a great excuse to blatantly recruit for my company without seeming off topic for the list.
In case it wasn't clear to others reading this thread, ANYONE IS WELCOME TO SEND ME RESUMES!!!
:-)
--Mark
hershey@vaultus.com
 
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