I attended a java user group meeting yesterday. Topic was State of Aspect oriented programming.

20% of audience had used aspect oriented programming in their projects. Compared to the demos given using Ant, JaaS, AspectJ, Sping, Log4j etc, I felt like a barbarian who still use System.out.println(“I am here..”) for debugging and Notepad for coding.

I am convinced that these tools or methodologies increase programmer productivity, code maintainability and durable design. But how many actual customers who pay for IT projects understand or even care about using these? Then again I guess it is not a choice to be made by customers, but by the programmers.

That leads me to next question:- there are so many frameworks, tools and patterns out there. I got involved in one open source project in Sourceforge to get an insight about open source, but had to drop out because of the pace at which people with various strengths (specialists) collaborated. I think the question is beyond which language or which database to use, but whether to use one or other framework should be used for connection pooling, authentication, logging and almost all aspects of programming. It is hard to know what is out there in the first place, so unless you are a specialist how will you choose what to use instead of resorting to old barbarian ways?

On a non-technical note – it is fun to attend such meetings. First objective is to shake out of routine to see what is happening out there in the world. One other interesting thing is to see the community – it was a diverse one in all shapes and sizes. There was one that looked like a cop or a wrestler, another one probably a biker, some students, some grandfathers, many with port bellies (like beer bellies, there is something called programmer bellies), many Chinese and some Indians (I seem to always take a ratio of Chinese/Japanese/Koreans Vs Indians in such gatherings – it is like a performance metric).


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