Java programmers can find several dozen nice-looking icons for use in graphical user interfaces in the Java Look and Feel Graphics Repository, part of Sun's Java site. The graphics are intended to promote Java's standard look and feel, but they also can be adopted for other purposes. I'm using them in an RSS newsreader demo project for the next edition of Sams Teach Yourself Java 2 in 21 Days. ... read more

Danny Ayers offers an "anything but OPML" rant against the world's most popular outline markup language. He writes: It's worth noting that you can express hierarchies and everything else I've seen suggested for OPML (text outlines, links, images etc) in (X)HTML. I suspect there are more HTML readers/writers than OPML ones! Unless XHTML can be used to express the expansion state of specific items, I don't see how it could be used as an alternative to OPML for outlines. OPML's an odd bird, but I've implemented a ... read more

I found a much-needed Java programming tip in a LiveJournal XML-RPC client programming discussion this afternoon: How to create an MD5-hashed password from a string. Radio UserLand only presents hashed passwords when publishing via XML-RPC, storing the plain text version in the object database. The following class method can be used to create a hash from a string: public static String hashPassword(String password) { String hashword = null; try { MessageDigest md5 = MessageDigest.getInstance("MD5"); ... read more

While doing research on Java implementations of the XMLStorageSystem API, the backbone of Radio UserLand web hosting, I found something unusual: Full support for the API in a commercial server product. As shown in the documentation, the OpenLink Virtuoso "universal server" supports the XML Storage System, MetaWeblog, Blogger, and Moveable Type APIs, which enables it to host weblogs created with Radio and other weblogging tools. This is my first exposure to Virtuoso, but in an article for InfoWorld, Jon Udell makes ... read more

In an e-mail, Garth Patil writes: I just read your Linux Magazine article on the Naked Objects framework. ... I've been dinking around in their source, and I can't figure out why all of the Java primitive data types need to be duplicated in the framework. Do you know of an example of why these duplicates are necessary? For example, looking through the source, I can't figure out what the advantage/necessity of using TextString over String. Anyway, I'm probably missing something huge, and I was hoping you could help ... read more

Joshua Marinacci has become a convert to Struts and custom Java Server Pages tag libraries, using them to make it easier for his HTML-coding sister to maintain a weblog implemented with JSP: .... now I've discovered custom taglibs. These are brilliant! From my sister's point of view there are now a few magic tags she can use to do something. My scripts are no longer code, just extensions to HTML, as if there was a new version of Netscape with support for a magic <blog> tag. These tag libraries get even ... read more

According to Java weblogger Jonathan Simon, JavaSound lead programmer Florian Bomers is currently the only person assigned to the project at Sun: I've worked with Florian in the past, mostly communicating via the JavaSound listserv. Now, I always knew he was the only one that returned my emails. I just figured he was the head of the team or at least the designated spokesperson. Well, it turns out he is the team -- the whole team! The library, a standard part of Java 2 since version 1.3, has a reputation for being ... read more