This week’s roundup is out a bit later than usual because I was on a mini-vacation this weekend. It’s amazing to me that the folks who run rental properties don’t think that anyone ever travels with their children; it was hardly “relaxing” to keep an eye on JMJ 2.0 (currently headed into Year 2 of the 18 year maintenance contract) in a house without electric outlet covers! On the other hand, I applaud his natural curiosity and free spirit; maybe he can be a third-generation developer. Here’s the latest programming news.

Oracle buys Sun: What does this mean for the Java community?

Read Larry Dignan’s write up about Oracle’s announcement that it will buy Sun Microsystems for $9.50 a share in cash or about $5.6 billion excluding debt. The company added that the acquisition of Java “is the most important software Oracle has ever acquired.” Also, find out why Dana Gardner thinks this deal makes perfect sense and that Java comes out as a winner.

I still need a little more time to digest this news; I’ll offer my thoughts on this major announcement in next week’s roundup. I’m curious to know what TechRepublic members think this means for the Java community. 

Good tutorial on Silverlight animation

Charlie Calvert at MSDN has a good, short tutorial on animations in Silverlight, which also serves as a decent little intro to Silverlight in general. He is starting a series on Silverlight layouts; Part 1 is already up, with more to follow.

Python 2.6.2 is released

Python 2.6.2 has been released; it is a maintenance version with bug fixes in it. If you are using 2.6.1, you will want to upgrade.

Coverity announces two new tools to increase productivity

Coverity has announced two new tools: Build Analysis and Integrity Center. Build Analysis is designed to make the build process go more smoothly, which is critical to large projects. It looks for a variety of issues (broken make files, code defects, etc.), examines the use of open source code for various vulnerabilities, and can produce a manifest showing where each component came from, it’s version number, and so on. Integrity Center combines Coverity’s tools into one suite; it includes Build Analysis, Architecture Analysis, Static Analysis, and Dynamic Analysis.

Microsoft open sources the Common Compiler Infrastructure

Microsoft has decided to open source its Common Compiler Infrastructure; you can download the code from Codeplex. This package makes it easier to create .NET compilers. The license is the friendly Ms-Pl license, which is very permissive for those who are concerned about such things (it is very similar to the BSD license).

Scala 2.7.4 RC1 is released

The Scala team has released RC 1 of Scala 2.7.4. This is a maintenance release that fixes a bunch of bugs.

Delphi Live! is coming to San Jose

Embarcadero is holding a new community event called Delphi Live! This event will be held in San Jose, CA, from May 13th – May 16th at the San Jose Marriott. This is a great opportunity to meet other Delphi developers, as well as the people behind the Delphi product. It looks like there will be a ton of great workshops, too.

Microsoft introduces Visual Web Developer Express 2008

In a refresh of its Express line of Visual Studio products, Microsoft has released Visual Web Developer Express 2008. If you are looking to try your hand at Web development on the ASP.NET platform but want a less complex product or do not wish to sink any money into the experience, this is the product for you.

Microsoft BizSpark includes MSDN subscription

I am not sure how old (or new) this is, but my friend Chance Dinkins pointed out to me that the Microsoft BizSpark program (for helping startups) now includes a free MSDN subscription.

Novell supports Mono 2.4

Novell is now offering commercial support for Mono 2.4. This brings the Mono offering more in line with the needs of many development shops, particularly those where “is support available?” is a mandatory item on the decision making checklist.


Disclosure of Justin’s industry affiliations: Justin James has a working arrangement with Microsoft to write an article for MSDN Magazine. He also has a contract with Spiceworks to write product buying guides.


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