I just finished up the Java 8 lambda’s and streams class. I finished a little later than I wanted to because I decided to upgrade to Windows 10 last week which was an epic failure. I used the media download tool to upgrade prior to my machine coming up in the queue and all the upgrade ran normally and things appeared to work fine. At the end it booted up and presented a login screen. I attempted to login and the machine sat there spinning for about a minute and then rebooted. After coming back the same. At that point I realized I made a mistake trusting the upgrade and my normal windows procedure is to buy a new drive, do a clean install and then bring my data over. (That was last Wednesday.) So Thursday at noon I ran over to Microcenter and bought a new drive. Then over the weekend I did a clean install of 10 and copied my data from the old drive. I am not up and running on 10 and I would have to say I like it more than Windows 7. It seems fast on my old machine, the UI improvements are great, but I haven’t yet had a chance to test any of my games on Steam to see how it handles video gaming. A coworker tried to upgrade his Windows 7 laptop which also failed but his automatically rolled back. My nephew was able to successfully run the upgrade from Windows 8.1 so it seems like 8 is a safer OS to upgrade from.
Now on to the class, I did lesson 3 and Simon did a great job closing out the topic. My first impression of the course was that I thought I preferred Venkat’s approach to the topic at SpringOne 2014, but what I liked about Simon Ritter’s approach was he covered a lot of low level questions I immediately had when watching the videos. Like primitives vs a lot of boxing and unboxing of variables. Another advantage of Simon’s course was the homework was amazing. I would watch all the lectures and be like yeah I got this, and then the homework would hit and I would be like wait how do I do that again? I watched Venkat’s video, but since I didn’t start using the stuff right away it didn’t stick. In this case I was forced to use the material from the video which was super helpful. The homework questions seemed to escalate in difficulty which was good to really reinforce the knowledge. The test questions were really good, but I didn’t like the questions where you had to check multiple correct questions, and I think those were the one’s I missed. I think I do better with a radio button style of answer than a check all that are right test, but I still passed all the tests easily after doing the homework.
I have to say the homework 3 was brutal I haven’t completely finished the problem yet, which is probably a good sign as it really challenged me whereas all the previous homework problems I could work through in about 30 minutes. So at the end of the day would I recommend the course? Most definitely it was great and I am much better off for taking it. This was my first practical use of the new Java 8 constructs and the material was laid out in such a way that it really challenged my thinking to get me to stop thinking imperatively and start thinking functionally. I have approval at work to start working on our JBoss EAP upgrade and once I get that in place Java 8 will be a go. Hopefully in the next month or two we will be running this in production and then I am going to turn on java 8 compilation and start using this stuff. They are talking about re-running this class in September and anyone who missed this round should sign up then. Also you should follow Simon Ritter on Twitter at @speakjava.