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Help me with some decision

 
Sajid Moinuddin
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hello all,
this is my first post to this group. I have passed scjp 1.4 last month and have just started thinking about SCJD. The faq section of this forum answered many of my questions. But I would like to have some more clarification from you guys.
First of all, which version of java should I use? I have started loving 'Tiger' but i'm afraid i have not fully mastered it yet and don't know for sure whether i'll be able to do so or not. So if I use some features of 1.5, and not be able to use some other features which might be great, do i loose points. I mean i am fully comfortable with 1.4. So if i use it, there is no big risk i will be facing. Should i just stick with 1.4? or should i start coding with 1.5? which one do u think i should prefer? I mean there are so many cool features in 1.5 that I might miss some, do i get to loose points for that? I have already started using 1.5 in my work place. But no one is deducting marks for not being able to use all the features of it
and secondly, where to start? for scjp k&B was the ultimate thing and i got 91% without having much trouble. So i already have that book. Is there any other good material /link on net?
sorry for this long mail. I assure u the upcoming mails wouldn't be so long
regards
Sajid
 
Jack Gold
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Start with 1.5. Project must be tested against a production version of JDK that is within 18 months old. By the off chance you dont finish in the next year, using 1.5 will buy you some time.
 
Frans Janssen
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Use 1.5 in order to get experience using the new features.

Frans.
 
Sajid Moinuddin
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hi again,
I am sorry that i couldn't make myself clear. actually i would like to use 1.5. but my question was if i use it but fail to use any new feature of it , is it gonna cause deduction of my marks?
regards ,
sajid
 
Frans Janssen
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Hi Sajid,

To be honest, I can imagine that failing to use a new feature where it would have improved your assignment's quality/efficiency/maintainability, could lead to minor deduction in the General Considerations department. But I don't think that you would fail because of that.

So if you really want to be safe, you should go for 1.4. I choose for the more adventerous way of using 1.5 and using the assignment to discover the new features. The assignment is an opportunity to learn more about Java, which I value as more important than having a perfect score.

Frans.
 
Andrew Monkhouse
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Hi Sajid,

Like Frans, I cannot imagine you loosing marks for failing to use a new feature of JDK 5.

Since you are already using JDK 5 at work, you are probably using generics - if you don't you will get a warning from the compiler, and using the javac "-Xlint:unchecked" option will even tell you the exact line numbers where you can use generics, so it is easy to add generics to your code as you go through (personally I always add '-Xlint:all' to all of my ant scripts so that I always get all the potential errors).

I would also suspect that you may have played around with autoboxing and the enhanced for loop. If so, you will already be using the major core language changes of JDK 5.

As for the new APIs - they are design decisions. You should not try to force a new API into your design just because it exists - you should have a reason for trying to use it.

The only potential for problems would be if you wrote your own class(es) that duplicate the functionality of classes introduced in JDK 5 - and the assessor believes you should be reasonably aware of them (for example, if you decided to create your own form of reentrant lock, when JDK 5 has classes to handle this). To save you worrying about this, I would recommend you read through Sun's New Features and Enhancements page at regular intervals while working on your code, and go through it again one last time before you submit. If you are aware of what is possible before starting to code, and double check before you submit you are unlikely to re-invent a class.

Again, echoing Frans, I think using JDK 5 will give you a greater opportunity to learn and experiment.

Regards, Andrew
 
Sajid Moinuddin
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thnx Andrew Monkhouse,
You made it clear to me.Yes I have been playing around with all those features you mentioned . And my Tech Geek CTO made me write a validation framework & automated Code generator for Spring framework with annotation. While doing the work, I got to understand how powerful can those things be and how easily can I miss some of those powerful features. Moreover, I don't get to work with threads in my work so I might not get enough time to explore all the new threading issues in tiger. I , however, have decided to go for tiger as its gonna be much more interesting I think. why stick with a pistol when u can have a machine gun? .
Can u guys tell me where can I have a look on some mock assignment before i buy the real one?
regards,
Sajid
 
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