I want to create a fountain that can entertain guests. Namely, I want
to be able to control the flow of the fountain with my hand. Recently,
at our last summit, Jay Hannah
introduced me to the Leap Motion, which
is basically a Kinect for the hands. A little research introduced me
to Arduino, an open source solution for
The fountain will be built using base electrical components. The
actual physical basins for the water may be taken from an existing
fountain, but I plan on making that decision later. This post details
my initial goals for the project, as well as the first steps I took
towards a side-project, and the coding hurdles I had to overcome to
complete the side-project.
That's right folks. The annual North American Perl conference,
YAPC::NA, was held in sunny Orlando,
Florida last week. Infinity Interactive was well represented and many
of our developers presented talks.
I demonstrated how to consume a stock web service using WSDL2JAVA.
Although WSDL2JAVA is a great tool, it can generate some long and
difficult-to-read code. In this post, I'm going to demonstrate an
easier, more concise way of calling the same web service using Groovy.
Recently, I was working on a team project with a number of independent
components each with their own data, logic, and presentation layer. I
was assigned the task of creating an API for capturing large amounts
of real-time data. Since other developers needed to use it, the API
had to be documented.
Technical writing is probably one of the most difficult things to do.
The intended audience most likely does not want to read it. It needs
to have just enough detail, but it needs to be short. And even if it
does meet all those requirements, people still may not read it.
Are you trying to bring modern development practices to a
…less-than-modern software development environment?
Editor's Note: The picture below, and this article in general, may
seem like unusual content to find on the blog of a technical company
like Infinity Interactive, but one of our goals here is to give you a
full picture of Infinity and our employees, and we think this article
by Paul Zolnierczyk, a member of our .NET/Java team, has some
important things to say.
Before I joined Infinity Interactive, I worked in typical IT work
environments. I can go on about how much better the water cooler talk
is over in our '#General' IRC channel but that can be saved for
another post. What I'd like to talk about is how working at Infinity
Interactive allows me to live my life and truly achieve a healthy
I abhor when people treat us like “Vendors” instead of Partners.
You might think that it’s merely semantics, but I would say that the
words that we use to define our relationship actually help define the
quality of our interactions and the philosophy and attitude of how we
work together. Look at the etymology… Vendor comes from the Latin
"vendere," to sell, whereas partner comes from the French "parçonier,"
joint owner. The former smacks of "me getting mine", while the latter
is about our mutual success.
When working with non-technical clients, often their preferred means
of exchanging structured data is via spreadsheets. Using a custom tool
is not always practical due to cost or training time constraints, and
using a type of document that doesn't have its own standard editor
(such as XML or JSON) will generally result in having to deal with
malformed files on a regular basis, since these files are often edited
Excel is the only program for managing structured data that is widely
used by both technical and non-technical people, and being able to
leverage that structure can make the whole data exchange process much
smoother, even though it can be frustrating at times.
Leap Motion is a slick little infrared
sensor unit you can buy for $80 online, or at your local Best Buy. A
quick install later and you can now wave your hands in space above the
unit and interact with your computer in three dimensions.
I had the pleasure of working with Leap for a partner proof of concept
and thought I'd give you some of my early thoughts and observations.
If you've come across the task of consuming a web service via a WSDL
you were given, there's a chance you may have cringed a bit. All that
XML involved and then determining your approach is a challenge as
well! Do you want to use a SOAPConnectionFactory or create an XML
message by hand and parse the response? These approaches will work but
it will likely take time away from what you really want to do and that
is develop the application you're working on. Along comes WSDL2JAVA, a
tool which will build Java proxies and skeletons for services with
WSDL descriptions. In this article I'll highlight the steps needed to
consume a web service with WSDL2JAVA.