First post here and just wanted to say that I finally mustered the courage to take the programmer's exam. Passed it but I have to recommend to others that spending time coding is the way to consolidate what you will have learnt. I've coded for a few years until 2002 but to no more than java 1.2.
I picked up Sun Certified Programmer & Developer for Java 2 Study Guide by Kathy Sierra and Bert Bates only had a week to get through it - as I've said that courage came late and put me in a tight spot. With family and work commitments it was a struggle and took the decision not to do he questions at the end of each chapter as I had to cover it page by page as I knew that there were 'new' topics that I've never had to cover/code before. Went through the errata and spent time over code snippets within the chapters and key notes/tables along the way. Night before I just had time to go through the 2-minute drills again.
At the test centre was pretty nervous but knew my prep was not up to scratch. This was especially so for Threads.
Was glad I got through it but I hope no one goes through my experience.
The next day was the expiry date for the voucher. I had bought the voucher as a personal push to get back in to coding and was going to let it run out. What a waste that would have been.
I beleive that this certification is great to have and can open doors in the workplace, esp. if you want to move around and have shown that you can get accredited. SCWCD is my next step, with the SCBCD to follow. My aim is to get these out the way by the end of the year. By at least being up to speed with the technology (or at least certified in them) I now feel more confident and have the certification bug.
As I've moved away from Java a few years ago - not by choice, but had to go where the work was - and so I stopped browsing these forums. I'm back now and it's good to get back to these forums as well. Such a good feeling!!
Regards to all who have taken and are planning to take this exam.
All the best and have fun.