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Old hat greenhorn needs help

Christopher Burns
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Joined: Oct 21, 2008
Posts: 33
Hi gang,

I have it on good authority from another JR member that this is THE place, and everyone here is friendly and helpful. So, here is my neck for the hacking or helping.

I am a 20 year veteran software architect, and I know more computer languages than I have fingers and toes. I began using Java in 1993 or 1994 as an early adopter, and since then have only really dabbled until in 2003 I became the architect of the data acquisitions for the largest laser ever created on the planet, at a national laboratory. I was only there for about 4 months, and we were using J2EE, WebSphere, Struts, and the initial incarnation of AspectJ (I thought the whole idea of AOP was brilliant and solved many of my fundamental problems with developing).

All of that long-windedness just to show what my experience base is. I came up as a Smalltalk and C++ developer, so Java was a bit of a dream at first. Now, I am getting back into it and I essentially have 4 days to learn as much as I can for a major interview.


SKIP TO HERE FOR THE QUESTION!!!
So... after all of that garbage here is my question. The company I am interviewing with is using Spring, Struts, and Lucene. Everything I have read about Spring makes it look like an amalgam of all of the frameworks I build anyway when architecting a system, so I am excited about the 300KLoCs I won't have to write myself, but... drum roll please... can someone... ANYONE... point me to some sort of tutorial that takes and builds a REALLY simple UI that collects info and stores it in a DB using Spring? Preferably with eclipse as an IDE? I cannot find anything that says "create an App Context, do this to it, then begin building your BOs, and link them to their respective DAOs (with Hibernate let's say), and now build your UI using Struts like this..."

Does such an animal exist?

If there are no ideas on a tutorial, would someone be willing to mentor me (just some simple questions and answers while I work through this) for a few days? The economy being what it is and the fact that I have been out of work for coming up on 3 months, this interview (a second with this company) is CRUCIALLY important, so I am reaching out for help.

Thanks a MILLION in advance for ANY help from ANYONE!

Cheers,

Chris


"It is our choices, much more than our abilities, that make us who we are."
- Albus Dumbledore
Bear Bibeault
Author and ninkuma
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Joined: Jan 10, 2002
Posts: 60986
    
  65

Welcome to the Ranch, please check your private messages for an important administrative matter.


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Bear Bibeault
Author and ninkuma
Marshal

Joined: Jan 10, 2002
Posts: 60986
    
  65

Originally posted by Raconteur:
just some simple questions and answers while I work through this ...

This is the type of thing that the Ranch excels at. I'm not a Spring user myself, but there are plenty here who will be willing to help you.

You seem to already have a good grasp on asking questions in a cogent manner, and that will serve you well here.
Christopher Burns
Ranch Hand

Joined: Oct 21, 2008
Posts: 33
Well, fat lotta good you are!!! JK!

Thanks for the kind words (and the nudge about the handle). Been using/moderating/creating discussion groups since I can remember, and know how painful it can be when people who you want to help post no information of any worth for you to work from.

Hopefully someone can give me some ideas soon. My interview is Friday, and I have been studying and readying, trying to blow the dust off of my chops and pick up the new stuff, for 10 straight days. My brain is pretty mushy... especially since I have been doing a great deal of .NET lately, plus several PHP and ActionScript3 projects. Now with Java, I have like 4 languages in my head... feels like something as simple as the comment characters or the string concatenation operator could bring the whole house of cards down!

Cheers,

C
Gregg Bolinger
GenRocket Founder
Ranch Hand

Joined: Jul 11, 2001
Posts: 15299
    
    6

Christopher,

As you know Spring has a lot of modules. I'm curious as to why you need to build a UI with Spring (and what you mean by UI; SpringMVC?) if the company you are interviewing for uses Struts. By using Struts they are not using SpringMVC but are probably using Spring for service/dao/IoC management and transactional support. Also, do you know what they are using for their data layer, if they have one? JDBC, Hibernate/JPA, iBatis? This will make a bit of a difference on the type of tutorial you need.


GenRocket - Experts at Building Test Data
Christopher Burns
Ranch Hand

Joined: Oct 21, 2008
Posts: 33
Hi Greg,

They are using Struts for UI, so obviously MVC. As for the data tier, there isn't a spec in the JD. I know they are using Oracle (based on some PL-SQL questions and info). I wrote what eventually became TopLink back in the early 90s, and have my own ORM framework that I have ported to many languages, but I thought this might be a good time to get my feet wet with Hibernate.

I was planning on writing a little Hopfield (or a FAM) Network with parameters adjusted via UI and stored in the DB as an example app to work from. I figure this will give me exposure to the use of Struts, Spring, AspectJ or SpringAOP, and Hibernate.

I think if I can just get the bits of info to connect the dots of what I do know, and get started, I can bang that out in the 3 days I have remaining.

I do have two really basic questions, which I'd rather not muddy this thread with... do you mind if I IM you with them?

Cheers,

Chris
Gregg Bolinger
GenRocket Founder
Ranch Hand

Joined: Jul 11, 2001
Posts: 15299
    
    6

So I take it you don't plan on sleeping for the next 3 days? There is a lot to grasp in such a short time and while I don't pretend to know how quickly you can learn this stuff, it is going to be tough. Hibernate alone is a monster (regardless of what the gurus say).

This is probably the quickest way to get a Spring + JPA/Hibernate configuration working. I know very little about Struts so I won't be of much help there.

Man, there is just so much in addition to this it is hard to know what else to tell you without just mucking it all up.

I do have two really basic questions, which I'd rather not muddy this thread with... do you mind if I IM you with them?

Generally it would be a good idea to just post these as questions in a new thread so that the community can gain from our correspondence and I'm probably not the only one that can answer your questions. If you still want to contact me directly that is fine. I just can't promise a quick response.
Christopher Burns
Ranch Hand

Joined: Oct 21, 2008
Posts: 33
Thanks, Greg. That really helps.

I have another one I found, but looks like it was written by a non-English speaker so I have to figure out the grammar and spelling, plus it has a numnber of holes in it, but filling those in is proving useful.

I know it is a lot to bite off, but like I said in my original post, most (if not all) of the Spring framework is stuff I have been writing from scratch for the past 20 years. I am really just looking for places where I can map what they do to what I do so I am on familiar turf.

I did post the other questions in the Java Beginner forum, since they are SO simple.

Cheers,

Chris
 
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