Changing Eclipse JVM

Sometimes Eclipse Ganymede will not run if it is unable to find a jdk 1.5 or greater.

Sometimes Eclipse Ganymede¬† hangs abruptly if you delete the jdk¬† it was using and if you have set only a JDK 1.4 on your path (Eclipse needs a jdk 1.5 or greater…).

The solution is firing a command line and typing something like

./eclipse -vm c:/Programmi/Java/jdk1.6.0_13/bin

See also:

If available under the eclipse/jre directory, the Eclipse JRE will be used; otherwise the launcher will consult the system path variable. Eclipse will NOT consult the JAVA_HOME environment variable.

To explicitly specify a JVM of your choice, you can use the -vm command line argument:

eclipse -vm c:\jre\bin\javaw.exe ”start Java by executing the specified java executable

eclipse -vm c:\jre\bin\client\jvm.dll ”start Java by loading the jvm in the eclipse process

eclipse -vm c:\jre\bin ”look for Java in the jre/bin directory

See the launcher page for more details on specifying a JVM.

via FAQ How do I run Eclipse? – Eclipsepedia.

Asus EEE-PC better then Mac Air?

Finally I managed to buy a Asus EEE PC 700  this week. I would thanks a lot Next Store and its kindly clerks, which I will prefer in future to Mediaword :)
If you are at Milan and you plan to buy it, Next Store is a good choice.

There are a lot of sites and articles around the net about the EEE-PC, because it is a very new article in the IT consumer world.

The EEE PC is the First  full featured PC sold at 300 euros. The Register tries also to compare it with the Mac Air, and we'll see why this is not a so crazy idea.
In these days in Italy was launched an overpriced version (320 euros) with Windows XP preinstalled. We are waiting also the more powerful version (EEEPC 900) at 400 euros. Anyway, what do the product is the 300 euro price: powerful and richer model at an higher price are no so stunning as the EEE PC 700.

Introduction: the hardware

The Asus EEE PC come with 3-usb 2.0 ports, and one SD Card reader. It is expandable a lot, considering it has the same usb ports of my Lenovo Thinkpad R60.  It has no DVD reader, but it is very small and tight. The  battery charger is similar to that of a GSM phone, and it sounds great because of its reduced weight.
The screen is tiny, but very very bright, so it can work if you are not too much greedy as me.

Even if the keyboard is too small, and the fan is noisy, for the rest EEEPC looks well.
With an external monitor&keyboard attached,  your trouble are reduced, at least at home.
You can compare it to a Mac Mini, sold at 600 euros, which has a similar but powerful hardware: so having half the ram for the EEEPC is not a surprise.
But the EEEPC 701 is easy to expand, and on Internet some guys managed to install 2Gb of RAM.
And it is not shipped by deafult with windows but with a linux operating system… another big news, isn't it?


I code every day. So in my spare time, at home, I have two priorities: my girlfriends, and games.
And EEE-PC come with some funny games like Frozen Bubble, so it is definitively a very good machine.

 Vodafone & EEE-PC

In Italy, Telecom Italia sells a branded version of EEE-PC, with its USB connect key. If you have a Vodafone Connect Key, I have found an italian article to try to connect it. I will do some tests, and then translate it in English if it is worth of it.

The Software…

The operating system is a commercial version of Linux. Anyway it is well packaged, and it is reasonable fast. The File Manager does not start in a snap, but it could be worst.

…the ideas

Because is  heavly focused on software development, I am searching a set of article to how build a small cluster of EEE-PC, for doing small distributed computing. The cluster should be easy to set up, with no installation of new operating system, and should have decent performance.
I will report  my experiments in the next month.

Hacking it [Update on 11 june 2008]

Ubuntu has relased a specilized version of ubuntu linux

Conclusion: Why it is great

All these stuff fit in about 300 euros, and there is no decent PDA  at this price…even a good Nokia GSM phone is difficult to find for a such price. The EEE-PC weights less then 1 Kg, and it is very easy to carry on. The webcam is good if you have sufficient light to give it, and you can record at 44.1 khz your voice.
Skype comes preinstalled, giving you a lot of freedom with its VoiceOverIP technology.



Dynamic languages troubles

I have read and I think it is very danger way of exposing concepts.

In the article pointed out, the quite dead Chandler project is compared to the multi-billion Eclipse project. And then a too easy analysis is done against dynamic languages, where Java is the absolute winner.

I will try to fix some of the things said there, and to add also my two cents here :)


First of all, I use Java a lot, but I am also a fan of dynamic languages. Every tool has its place in the world, and I will avoid some holy war here. 

Anyway, it is important to understand major differences between very distant projects.


First of all, Eclipse is a very huge project, developed by IBM and based from the beginning with a very strong hype on plugin modularization.

The effort pushed inside Eclipse is very huge and come also from the San Francisco Project. Other IDEs (like JBuilder and Together) stops fighting Eclipse years ago, and eventually failed even to sell their stuff.

 So there are no similar example to Eclipse in Python/Ruby/Perl world. Even in PHP is hard to find a so huge and well designed program. And the languge here is less important: a company big as IBM can also code in PL/I all its stuff, without so much pain :)

Second, PHP is very successful language, even if a bit too insecure, at the present time.

PHP Language has poor support for modules and so on, but project like Drupal, Joomla and other are full of plugins, quite easy to write.

RubyOnRails is falling down because nobody is understanding why PHP should be abandoned for Rails.

Java architectural model is very well written and Sun worked very hard to it. Java Hot Spot VM is derivered from the Self dynamic language,  and has inside technology difficult to develop in an open source project.

Surely Dynamic languages are strong when there is the one-man-band paradigm: sharing works in Smalltalk was  a bit complex in early days.

Put Perl, python and ruby have a strong modularization concepts, and so this issue is often solved.

I have tried Zope and I think it is weak because:

  • Zope is user is non-existent. Zope user is a super-skilled web master which wants a web CMS without writing so much code.
  • Zope product upgrade is a nightmare
  • A stuck Zope Product can destroy your work. So hosting Zope is a problem
  • A lot of Zope basic objects (like cache accelerators and so on) are poorly minded: they works only on RAM, and are not thinked well. Drupal 5 has more strong theory for this issue, and Drupal is poor PHP code.
  • Zope use a proprietary database, when a simple SQL database with a relational mapper can do the same thing…think twice before reinventing the wheel!
  • Every major Zope releases breaks a lot of the API. This is the most stupid thing you can do as open source developer.

Chandler failed because they tried a very difficult business: calendar software is a very difficult area to address. All operating system (including possibly C/64 :-) has now a huge set of Personal Information Manager software (PIM), and LDAP solves sharing issue for big companies

Even Ximian Evolution is near death.

And your bigger competitor is Microsoft Exchange and… yes… old Unix.

Dynamic lanuages has many lacks, and difficult refactoring is a problem but… remember frefactoring tools was INVENTED under SMALLTALK!

IT is a place where you must be careful… isn't it?





Telecom troubles2

Il governo, d’accordo con l’opposizione vara un decreto per proteggere la privacy del povero signor “Mario Rossi” (o Bianchi… insomma un nome comune) spiato dai cattivoni di telecom. In pratica si vuole impedire che le scottanti telefonate tra Rossi (Bianchi) e la sua fida commercialista (amante) vengano scoperte.

La cosa parrebbe sensata se non avessimo l’impressione che lo scopo sia VEROSIMILMENTE un’altro.

Infatti un giornare come Repubblica (o il Giornale.. hem…) e’ composto da circa 46 pagine. Le intercettazioni sono 100.000 files.
Non si puo’ pubblicare tutto prima della fine del mondo, e la gente si sa perde interesse dopo circa tre puntate (anche meno…).

Tra questi 100.000 files, e’ probabile che il giornare sia molto piu’ interessato alle intercettazioni di ex veline, calciatori, sign Rossi OPPURE agli intrecci spesso unici (e italiani!) tra politica, mafia ed economia?

Per cui questo decreto sta cercando di salvare che cosa? Perche’ la privacy degli italiani e’ sacra solo quando riguarda ANCHE i politici, mentre nessuno alza un dito quando Report denuncia che H3G incoraggia la messa in onda di video-messaggi a luci rosse, spesso con minorenni?
Comunque la bomba non e’ nei centomila file: basta sapere come Telecom si serviva di questi dati per capire molte cose.
Se si trattava solo di spionaggio industriale (sarebbe il meno) oppure di cose ben piu’ grandi (ricordo che logge massoniche come la Propaganda2 andrebbero a nozze con cose del genere).

Tenete gli occhi aperti!

Telecom troubles

Tronchetti Provera ha deciso di scorporare Tim da Telecom.
Questa azione pare orientata trasformare Telecom in una “media company” e palesa l’intenzione di usare ricavere del denaro da questa operazione.
E’ quindi abbastanza probabile che almeno una parte di Tim verra’ ceduta: si vocifera di accordi con aree vicine alla TV satellitare, ma sono solo illazioni al momento.

Poiche’ Tim e’ rimasta l’unica azienda italiana di telefonia, e data la dimensione e la storia statale di Telecom, il governo si e’ risentito per questa mossa a sorpresa di Tronchetti.

Sono da indagare le ragioni profonde del dissesto di Telecom.
Il tentativo di Tronchetti e’ di migliorare i conti della capogruppo, trasformando Telecom Italia in una “media company”, magari facendo entrare Murdoch nel consiglio di amministrazione di TIM.

Personalmente sono molto dubbioso sul radioso futuro di AliceOnTV e vedo molto meglio il digitale terrestre, caldeggiato dal gruppo di potere Berlusconi.