Swing 2.0 Discussion Mailing List

Hello all,

Update: Project Kenai got back to me, so I have moved everything from Java.net onto Project Kenai. The new address is http://kenai.com/projects/swing2. Please subscribe to the mailing here and say hello.

Just a quick post: Given that I haven’t heard from project kenai about hosting a Swing 2 project there, I have decided to setup and move the Swing 2.0 discussion to mailing lists. I see some people have already subscribed to the list, but for others interested in following and contributing to a Swing 2.0 discussion, please subscribe to the dev mailing list and say hello.

Cheers,
Jonathan

Dell, and how not to create online forms for addresses

I just purchased a new Dell laptop. I quite like Dell, but their online process leaves a little to be desired, as shown in the image below:

Why are there only four ‘State and Country’ options, those being Auckland, Christchurch, Rotorua (?) and Wellington? I conveniently don’t belong to any of those ‘states’, although I do live in Palmerston North, which is located in New Zealand.

I actually had to ring Dell up, wait on their phone system for 10 minutes, and then be told “I always tell people Michael Dell didn’t study his geography – just choose Wellington”. I then asked – how do I specify Palmerston North – she wasn’t sure – so I just added it in the line above my suburb.

My order is now being shipped to:

3a Huata Place
Palmerston North
Riverdale
Jonathan Giles-Ph:06 3551198
4410
Wel , New Zealand

Which is some frankenstein city that spans over 200 kilometres. Additionally, my suburb (Riverdale) now subsumes my city (Palmerston North), which are both subsumed by the fact they are apparently located in ‘Wel’, New Zealand.

Ah well, here’s hoping it turns up here…but if anyone sees a lost looking courier in the next few weeks, can you point them my way?

Java Performance: Analysing Memory Usage

I just come across this very useful blog post that discusses an Eclipse-based tool that helps to analyse memory usage/wastage in Java applications. Having never heard of this tool before, I will definitely be looking into it in the next few days.

Obviously, to me and most people, performance is very important, as Centruflow is a graphically-rich application for which users demand a fluid experience, both in getting the application started (where Java traditionally struggles), and then once using the application. There are a number of traps in Java given that the main user interface library Swing is single threaded, and all interactions with the user interface should be done in this thread by calling the event dispatch thread. Not knowing this can lead to all sorts of unresponsive user interfaces and thread safety issues.

If anyone out there has other tools they recommend for analysing performance, I would love to hear about them.

How Not To Obfuscate Email Addresses – SourceForge Edition

I like to be active in the open source community. I join mailing lists, help where I can, and am of course always on the lookout for interesting topics of conversation. A lot of the mailing lists I subscribe to are run by Sourceforge. It’s a great site and it fosters a lot of good projects.

The problem is, I don’t much like spam, which is why I’m amazed with what I found today. I went to the mailing list page for one of the projects I work on as I wanted to hyperlink to a specific discussion so that people who aren’t subscribed to the mailing list can read a specific email discussion.

I was happy to see that SourceForge obfuscates the email addresses in the table shown on screen. For example, my name and email address comes up as ‘Jonathan Giles <[email protected]…>’ at the start of each email. ‘Great’, I thought, until I went to click on the url to the email I wanted to bring up. It has the rest of my email as part of the url. To test this out, I went to the SourceForge front page, chose the current ‘project of the month’ (ehcache), and went to the mailing list. Lo and behold, with the mildest of mental stimulation I could easily ascertain every email address. If I were a little bit unscrupulous, I could quite easily write a spider to crawl SourceForge and build a highly targeted spam list (highly targeted as we know the population is almost entirely developers).

As an example (and all apologies to picking on one person), I offer Jason Novotny’s email address, derived as such:

  • Jason Novotny <[email protected]…> is shown as his details attached to any message.
  • The URL to one of his messages is this.

The important part of that url is this:
[email protected]pinksheets.com.

Notice the @pi…. matches up with @pinksheets.com. Poor Jason, and poor anyone who uses SourceForge and doesn’t much appreciate spam. It’s probably no wonder I receive so much email along the lines of ‘Cheap OEM Software!!!1! Photoshop $1!!!’ – they know I am a software person.

I wrote this blog post in the hope that the SourceForge people would fix this, but of course, I’m realistic – I’m just one person. If you don’t like your email address being so readily gleaned from SourceForge, let them know – link them to this post if you want.

Disclaimers:

  1. Of course, I’m aware of the hypocrisy of this – after all, my email address is pretty well published over there to the right. But the web is not just me – and I’m sure some people want to be a little more guarded than I am.
  2. Also, I’m well aware that posting to a public mailing list removes any hope of your email address remaining private, but the ease with which a spider could crawl SourceForge is quite amazing. Signing up to mailing lists requires a bit more cunning for a spammer to collect.