Friday, March 1, 2013

Interesting Software News (in my view)

The technologie and tool stack I work with was heavily updated in 2013. This post is a quick overview of the most important technologies (primarily Java) and tools (primarily IDE) changes that happend this year.

Beside these there are some interesting announcements that I like to share and I also want to mention some smaller tools that I use more or less often and that also might be useful for someone else.

Recent Software Updates

  • Java had to figth some security vulnerabilities and the fight is not over yet. Today's version 7 Update 15 is the last fixed version of the stable branch. 
  • Oracle released Netbeans 7.3 with HTML 5 support. For HTML/JavaScript development I switched from my usual eclipse + Firefox + Firebug setup to Netbeans + Chrome. The first impressions seem promising.
  • eclipse released SP2 for eclipse 4.2 (Juno). The new version should have improved performance. The upcoming Kepler version seems promising as well.
  • Another security fix happend to the Maven build tool which is available in version 3.0.5 now. Most version 3.1.0 related improvements and fixes have already been done - so this version will possibly also arrive soon.
  • I am glad to see that JiBX (fast XML Java binding) was enabled for the usage with Java 7. Also the maven plugin was updated to version 1.2.5.



  • Although browser and plugins offer great support for all kinds of http requests I still like curl for simple tests. Unfortunatly it is not available on Windows. I use gow (Gnu On Windows) which is really simple to install and offers a wide range of linux binaries - including curl. I must admint that not all tools work well on Windows 7 and I hope that the project will continue and bugs will be fixed. At least the author (+Brent Matzelle) is still active on the issue tracker.
  • Who ever needs a JSON command line processor should have a look at jq. Quote from the Website: 'jq is like sed for JSON data'.
  • If you have to host an executable as a Windows service take a look at winsw. The tool seems to exists for several years but I just noticed it because the author (+Kohsuke Kawaguchi creator of Jenkins) tweeted about a documentation update. I did not use it so far but tend to trust in software written by KK.
  • The Instant SQL Formatter is an online tool that helps you to format long and confusing SQL statements.
  • Kind of funny is Shapecatcher (also an online tool) - It lets you draw something and tries to find matching unicode character.


I was pointed to a really amazing video of a rising full moon in Wellington, New Zealand. If there is nothing of interest in this post to you, go and watch the video! (Thanks +Wolfram Eberius for this wonderful link!)