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The Pros and Cons of Certification
"To Be or Not To Be Certified..." (Vol. 7, issue 2) by Keith Brown is a great editorial.

Finally someone is standing up and saying what the entire community is thinking: certification is just another money-making route for Sun.

Believe me, I've come up against a lot of people who wear their certification badge with pride, but you wouldn't want them anywhere near your project.

Certification is just a memory game, big deal. So if you're certified, well done...be proud of yourself...you've financed Sun a little bit more...you've "bought" an extra line for your CV!!!!
Henry Roswell
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I have some credibility problems with Keith Brown. I take his opinions with a grain of salt, since he "has been involved with Java for many years" and yet still needed to take a five-day programming course from Sun, and he considers "actually writing code" a "necessary evil" for preparing for this exam. I am studying for this exam to gain a better understanding of Java fundamentals; this process has already benefited me a lot, and I haven't even taken the actual test yet!
Rob Ross
via e-mail

Editor's Note: I believe you've misread the editorial. Keith Brown believes the programmer's exam is a necessary evil, not writing code.

Apples to Oranges
Alan Williamson is indeed correct about the lack of .NET developers on the street ("Scandalous Propaganda," [Vol. 7, issue 1]). It's premature for anyone to insist that .NET will ultimately be faster, especially for the necessary heavy lifting that's done in the middle tiers. Like COM and COM+, .NET is not only CLR, C#, and J#, it's a host of services as well. It's these additional services, like MTS, MSMQ, BixTalk, etc., that will make up solutions based on MS technology...and there ain't no real data yet.

All of this "speed" is attributed to some demos that are really focused on the CLR engine performance. MS is no stranger to strong VMs. In fact, if I'm not mistaken, they had the fastest JVM. So it's little wonder that a .NET application will cruise along just fine. However, their surrogate app server technology (MTS and COM+), while flashy and "easy to use," leaves much to be desired and is not something that will scale up and host millions of objects. As an MCSD and previous user, I speak from lessons learned.
Patrick Mulligan
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A Great Review
Getting Focus()ed - and a Quick JavaScript Lesson," by Charles Arehart (Vol. 7, issue 1) was a good review of basic and useful concepts.
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The Benefits of DCG
Dynamic Code Generation" by Norman Richards (Vol. 7, issue 2) is a great overall intro to the benefits and simple techniques of dynamic code generation.
Brian Maso
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Not a "Reel" Boss
How's the Boss" by Bill Baloglu and Billy Palmieri (Vol. 7, issue 2) was a letdown after such a good topic selection. I've come across numerous different and eccentric managers with their own sets of problems. The classification given by the authors on the types of managers seems more like a story of a reel life rather than real life.
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Bill Baloglu and Billy Palmieri's column was a fine read - a great blend of psychology, staffing experience, wit, and wisdom.
Larry Mundo
Elle [email protected]

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