In the summer of 2019, I helped lead a group of 16 young men to the Haarlem Jamborette. With Covid restrictions increasing by the day, I look back and think about all the basic freedoms I took for granted in going over there. Last year I was asked by our Sponsor, Woodcliff United Church, to reflect on what that trip meant.


…and I think it’s part of what’s created your growth problem.

The message I’ve been getting from Scouts Canada lately is, “We need to figure out how to grow…”. Enrollment numbers are way down. Competition is rising.

I just finished reading the latest Bylaws Policies and Procedures. I think I see why growth isn’t happening.

Let me explain

When you look at this photograph, what do you notice?

Image for post
Image for post
Where is everyone?

Yep, it’s a playground. The equipment is bright and safe and new. There is some form of soft landing to prevent injury.

It’s also empty.

It could be empty for a variety of reasons. Maybe the photographer asked the kids to move along so they could take this photo. Maybe they just sprayed for pests…or maybe it’s not what kids want. Kids might go to playgrounds to take risks, to feel thrilled. …


Note: This is a way to process strings as part of WPILibs Command Based Programming Framework…for use with First Robotics. It’s also applicable anytime you have to process information on a separate thread of execuction….I had to learn this a few years ago when processing FIX Messages from the Intercontinental Exchange.

Our FRC team set out to improve the Robot’s vision processing; an off season activity. We found the integration between our OpenMV and the Roborio was, well…confused. We had a really basic json message being passed down the wire from the eyes to the brain.

So what’s a nice way to manage the messages the Roborio reads from the serial port? …


Someone asked me the other day whether I had a website or not,

“Sure, yep, I do…durablemethods.com”

He asked how long since I’ve updated it

“Hmmm, 2 years maybe? I’ve been pretty busy

He pointed to the date of the last post, 2006.

7 Years?! What have I been doing for seven years. At the time of my last post I was doing Websphere Portal Development for a large Utility in Calgary. I’m still in Calgary but times have sure changed.

What’s the same?

  • Durable Methods still operating in Calgary
  • Durable Methods still write software
  • Durable Methods still work with…

Tools can be the bane of my existence sometimes…

IBM’s Rational Application Developer (RAD) handles the voodoo between your JSF JSP and the backing bean (pagecode). It maintains this reference with a commented line atop your JSP that looks something like this:

This tells the IBM PageDesigner that the methods/members of that particular page reside in a java file called ‘View.java’…simple enough.

I went to use their tool to add a button on a different JSP (edit.jsp). …


So I’m trying to configure a servlet running on Tomcat to connect to IBM’s DB2 Content Management system (via II4C). I can get it to run under WebSphere using Rational Application Developer but seeing as I want to buy a MacBook Pro for my development, I figure I need to start using a more vanilla toolset. Martin Fowler’s Ravine post served as part of the inspiration. I actually believe it’s a good idea to build J2EE apps using a variety of tools…proves the openstandardiness of my work. …


I think one of the most important virtues of a software professional is being fearless. Someone can lack fear for many reasons:

1) They’re naive

2) They’re stupid

3) They’re experienced

A naïve or stupid person is either naturally or consciously ignorant of the risk involved with the activity they’re about to embark on. The first can be forgiven until becomes a trend (in which case they’re starting to become the second).

J.B. Rainsberger once wrote (in JUnit Recipes):

Test until fear turns to boredom.

Taken up a level, it means do the little things that help you become fearless. Don’t just act without fear.

This entry was posted in Development, Lessons Learned. Bookmark the permalink.

Originally published at http://jamiemcilroy.wordpress.com on October 26, 2006.


So I’m working on a simple search screen (for querying LDAP attributes). There is a Googley type interface (simple box with a search button beside it). The LDAP throws a fit if you search on ‘null’ (the value assigned to a text box in JSF when no value has been entered). JSF field tags support a ‘required’ attribute which will validate them. The validation message is, well, brutal.

‘Validation Error: Input Required’

No big deal…I’ve coded lots of custom JSF validators before (for other types of validation), I’ll put a validation method on the pagecode, reference it in the field and be done with it. …


Last week on LOST….
What’s the issue with a File Upload control in a WebSphere Portlet (and please, if you’ve done something like this and know an easier way, I’m all ears)?

WebSphere portlets aren’t keen (they don’t listen for) forms that use multi-part encoding. The portlet action gets ignored, your file delivered to the heavens and your customer left feeling blue (IBM Blue?).

So the first part of the two part problem is getting the file up to the server. The second involves what to do with it once it arrives. …


Still working on the file upload portlet for my current client. I’ve decided to change gears and parse the request in a servlet rather than the portlet itself. Why? I think it will allow me to create a second form on the Portlet’s JSP and encode it in whatever way I need.

The portlet complies with JSR168, not the WebSphere portlet API. Seeing as it’s portal, I need to encode the URL to the servlet…easy enough.

String servletURL=response.encodeURL("/UploadServlet");

and pass this variable into the form’s action attribute and I’m done.

…except…I get a “Page Not Found” error and the following shows up on the…

About

Jamie McIlroy

Husband and Father. Wilderness First-Aid Certified. Terrible at tying knots. I play Squash. I like things that Trade. Leafs fan. FRC and Scouts Canada

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