Tech

Java Experience

After a frustrating search that didn’t bear any results, I made a decision
to move to another programming language. What was I searching for? Tips on how to develop
apps for mobile devices. I must admit, I was pidgeon holed in one programming language(Visual Basic).
I mean, I sincerely beleived that VB was the best thing after sliced bread..how wrong I was.
It was after a lot of unfruitful searches that I figured out that VB was not the best option for mobile development.

After a lot of Googling, Binging and Forum searching, I came to a realisation. If I wanted to build mobile apps, I would need to learn another
language. I had a number of options to choose from; Java, Objective-C and VB.net. I chose Java(for a number of obvious reasons), and man
has it been an experience!

It’s been 6 months since I started on Java. The first few weeks were easy…I took a couple of C++ classes
a few years ago, so getting the hang of the Java syntax was not so bad. I cruised through the initial parts, until I got to Object Oriented Programming, here is where
things started getting tough. To add to that, the video series i’m learning from lacks that exact topic (thanks to a corrupt video file).
So I was screwed.

To solve this problem, I got a few books to help me out; Java:How to program; Sams Teach yourself Java in 21 days, Java For Dummies and a number of tutorials from the net,
Somehow, I’ve always beleived that the more books I have, the more knowledge i’ll gain, as if 3000 pages of text will just feed themselves into my brain. I thought to myself,
c’mon you can do this, I mean I had taken an OO class at College,so this wasn’t going to be difficult right?? Wrong again.

See the lectures at College taught everything we needed to know about Inheritance,Polymorphism,Encapsulation and all that jazz. And by everything we needed to know,
I meant everything we needed to know to pass an exam. We never really got into the details of how all that was done, no not even a single code example,
because it was “unnecessary” as one lecturer put it.

Ok, back to my studies.As tough as it has been, I’ve made progress, I just wrapped up the inheritance topic and I’m jumping on to Polymorphism.
This is not to say it has been easy, no. There were times when the compiler(I like to refer to it as javac) and I exchanged a few words I’d rather not type here. There were times when I got so
frustrated that i would snap, curse,shout and almost scream(the end result would be to walk away…and be in a bad mood the whole day).

Things are a bit better now as I’ve gotten the hang of error messages that javac throws at me when it’s not happy with my code.
A common errors I get are static refference errors,beside that , i get the usual, unkown symbol, missing semi colon errors.

Polymorphism is great too. The concept is confusing at first, since it’s an abstract concept. It’s one of the coolest things I’ve studied so far. Not only does it save time, it makes your code look neat. I think it’s magic though, think about passing a dog and a cat (or any other animal that maybe discovered after the code is written) to a single object as parameters(the method would just have to accept parameters of type animal…..sweet)

I’m only half way down, I still have to go through Swing,Network programming,Threads, Databases and the like; but the good thing is, I’ve got most of the basics down and i’ll keep
coding until I finally get it,even if it takes a lifetime. Yeah, an article I read says it takes about 10 years to be a good programmer.

Ok, I’ve given my mind a break, back to javac.

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