Organizing and Downloading

I know I probably shouldn't do this, but I want to use specific technologies for my project and many of them I don't have a lot of experience with. This means there'll be a learning curve and setup issues... but what the hell. Part of the plan is to keep my ass employeable. I feel like I have a direction now, so I'm very excited and focused. That and a real deadline helps cut through the crap. Plus I've been doing "analysis" for what seems like months now, so I'm ready to start messing with implementation, and that's always fun.

So, I'm now reading fellow Mobitopian Matthew Langham's Cocoon book from O'Reilly. Right now on Safari, but I want a hard copy so I'm going to see if I can get down to my favorite tech bookstore here in Madrid, Cocodrilo Libros, and grab a copy. While I'm there, I'll probably see if I can find some of Tom's recommended 3G books. They close at 2 p.m. for the weekend (welcome to Spain), so this might be a tight squeeze... we'll see.

I signed up for an SSL cert last night from Instant SSL. It was quick and easy and I'm waiting for verification of the passport copy I sent them. I'm doing any e-commerce yet, but the stuff that the Nokia 7650 sends from its phone sometimes needs an https connection, so I got a cheap SSL cert to get rolling.

As luck would have it, Eclipse 2.1 was released yesterday and I grabbed it last night. I cannot BELIEVE how great it keeps getting. More powerful, flexible and helpful with every release. Check out the changelog, lots of great new stuff.

I'm going to be doing a lot of XML editing (WML, XHMTL and SMIL)... I'm hoping one of the XML Plug-ins I've found for Eclipse will cut it: XBuddy and XMen or whether I need to go get XMLSpy or some other dedicated editor. Obviously I'd like to "live" within Eclipse for sanity's sake, but messing with XML suuuuuucks without a decent editor (unless you LIKE scrolling through reams of tags looking for a missing / or an unescaped � ). Any suggestions would be welcome here.

The wonderful thing about what I'm doing is that it's JUST MINE. I'm not publishing this stuff, just the web service which means I can just get the shit working without having to make it beautiful. Get it working, then get it optimized. Actually, the plan is to have a duplicatable app server that I can sell at some point, but for now getting it working is job one. I do eventually want to have some J2ME stuff as well - I like the idea of having rich web-services clients in the form of J2ME apps: Do the majority of the app in a markup language, but when it'll be good go have something a little more intuitive or be able to go offline, make a quick J2ME app using high-level APIS (forms, etc.). We'll see. Web stuff first.

I've also downloaded OrionServer 2.0. It came out almost TWO MONTHS ago and I only noticed last night. This actually isn't my fault. They've been on version 1.5x for SOOOO long, like almost 2 years, that I had just given up on a new version. I thought they would have been subsumed by Oracle by now, but I guess not. Orion is as good as ever - if a bit non-standard - but MAN do I love that app server. I've been using it for so long I can't imagine using anything else. The several months I've had to use Tomcat or Resin and I was just lost. OrionServer rules all.

However. It's already having fits working with Cocoon2. Doh! I found this great article on how to get Cocoon2 set up and it included a link to the author's home page where he gives detailed instructions on getting Cocoon to play nice with Orion. I'm still messing with it, but it's worth the effort IMHO. I don't have reams of memory to play with on my server, so the jury is still out whether Cocoon will be the solution I use for all the XML stuff. I may have to just do plain JSP instead if it sucks up too many resources... again, we'll see. I know from talking to Matthew that it's a good technology to know right now. Orion does have an XML/XSLT filter built in which is pretty neat - though I don't know exactly how "real" it is to use on projects, but it'll process any jsp page after you produce it and apply a stylesheet, etc. before delivering it to the browser. For what I'm doing right now, that may be all I need...

Let's see, what else? I've decided I'm not going to download Borland's Symbian C++ Builder demo for now because I don't know C++ and it's not integral to what I'm doing. And I think I'm going to stick with Eclipse for most of my J2ME development - if I get there, that's a bit down on the list right now - but I do want to make an effort to load up the CodeWarrior Wireless edition I downloaded from Motorola's developer site MotoCoder... Erik's been using CodeWarrior for years and likes the integrated dev environment and debugger, so it might be a time saver to try it out.

Nokia has a ton of other stuff I want to grok - all their docs and tools for WAP and XHTML as well as MMS stuff... It's quite a lot. But one step at a time.

Okay, better get back to it.


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