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Passed SCJP 6 on first try

 
Bob Ruth
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After two years of VERY UNSTABLE preparations I sat down two nights ago thinking that I had until 30 Jun to take the test, looked at my certificate, and saw that it would expire on 11 Jun. I got online quickly... and scheduled a test for 9am on 11 Jun. My plan was to study all evening on the 10th but fate had other plans. When I got home from work I found that my wife's pickup truck had a broken shock absorber mount and, while removing the old ones, found that they were actually both broken. So I spent the evening replacing shock absorbers. You have to do what you have to do.

I got up this morning, spent about 20 minutes scanning over generics and a little on date and number formatting.

By the time I finished my first pass through the test, I had about 50 minutes left and 9 questions marked. I cleared the last one with about 25 minutes left. So I did the test in 3 hours and 5 minutes total.

The results? 62 correct out of 72 for a final score of 86%. I had hoped for better but am happy with that.

Here is the Section Analysis:
Declaration, Initialization, and Scoping....................... 91%
Flow Control .......................................................... 63%
API Contents ......................................................... 100%
Concurrency ......................................................... 100%
OO Concepts ......................................................... 90%
Collections/Generics ............................................... 70%
Fundamentals ........................................................ 90%

The Collections/Generics being 70 I can understand.
The flow control being that low confuses me because I sure don't have any trouble with it when I code but.... you know what? It is what it is !!!

For those wondering about " two years??? is this guy an idiot???"

The answer.... yes! But that doesn't have anything to do with it.

I was laid off in the summer of 2006 from an 18 year career as an OS/Systems/Internals guy with a fair sized computer company. If any of you research computer history, the first 32 bit mini-computer to run Bell Labs Unix was an Interdata Model 8/32. Later they became Perkin-Elmer, later still Concurrent Computer Corporation. When they let me go, I had pretty much missed the "Rise of the Object Oriented Paradigm" and was looking for a job. I had to make plans and one of them was to "steep myself" in Java. I joined the local Java Users Group and started studying everything I could get my hands on. Work was spotty in those times and, when I had it, I had to put studies on hold because the contract positions I worked took a lot of time and were pretty high-intensity in nature. Consequently, I would get lazy and put my books down. One contract lasted about 6 months, the next one was also 6 months. Then fortune smiled and I found myself in a full time position in bioinformatics here in Houston and had to pour my energy into learning this new territory. More Java, groovy, SQL, Maven, Subversion, Google WebToolkit, and the list is just starting. So my preparation has been a spotty adventure at best.

And I can't leave out the kudos.

Kathy..... Bert..... thank you. I'd like to say that I feel like I know every word in that book but, if I really did, I would have scored better!!!
That book has been through Hell. It has been slept on, dropped in a tub (by a reader who really SHOULD have been in bed...), it has been rained on, it has been camping, it has been to work, it has been in a courtroom, it has been to Cub Scout meetings, it has been to sporting events, it has had food dropped on it...... you can't imagine what this thing looks like.
But thank you none the less for putting your hearts and knowledge into this fine book. You make a difference.

These hallowed halls right here house one of the finest collections of people on this earth. There are more people here that help just to help. IN my entire time here I have never...... not once... felt that anyone was being unkind or demeaning. Even when I was wrong on something and was TOLD so, it was always done in a non-combative spirit of helping me to "see the light". Thank you one and all whose paths I have crossed here.

Ankit, I don't know if you are still here but, for some reason I followed a lot of your postings learning from your answers. Thanks for being a mentor even if you didn't know it.

"ExamLabs". I never did very well but I developed that same feeling that I had once in a while back when I was being paddled. It hurt..... but I was learning a lesson.

ONe thing I would especially recommend to people persuing certification: hang out at this forum, get involved in threads by answering questions!!! It has been my experience that you never quite learn anything the way you do when you try to teach it to someone else. You may think that you know something well so you throw in an answer..... only to have someone come back and post something that blows your understanding away. But ... READ IT!! That is the way you learn. Also, never fear being wrong/making mistakes. Each one is an opportunity to learn. Learn.... and the mistakes become fewer and farther between.

If I have put anyone to sleep.... my apologies are inserted at this point.

But, again, thanks to everyone here for a lot of help. I couldn't have done it without this experience. At least not as easily....

Best regards,
Bob
 
Paul Anilprem
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Congratulations!!!
 
Devaka Cooray
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My congratulations Bob
 
arulk pillai
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Bob Ruth
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Thank you all three. It was fun actually. That is the first time I have ever taken a certification exam and really the first time that I have been given a serious exam since I was in college. It felt good.
 
Krishna Srinivasan
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congrats!!
 
Garg Sharad
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Congra8s
 
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