Welcome!

AJAX & REA Authors: Liz McMillan, Elizabeth White, David H Deans, Pat Romanski, Scott Hirsch

Related Topics: Java, XML, SOA & WOA, .NET, Eclipse, AJAX & REA

Java: Book Review

Book Review: Java Coding Guidelines

Part of the SEI Series in Software Engineering

Although this book is written for the Java programmer, I would recommend reading it to any .NET or iOS developer as well. It is a must read for the Java developer, but is also a valuable read for developers of other languages because the guidelines are often built around a programmer's intent.

No matter what language you use most, many of the intentions that are targeted by the guidelines are the same. Do I wish there was a C# and Objective-C version of this book? Heck Yeah!!! But, one of the things that helped get to a deeper understanding of the guidelines was thinking about where and how they apply to C# and Objective-C. There is Secure Coding in C and C++ (Second Edition) and The CERT C Secure Coding Standard which are both great too.

The guidelines are broken down by chapter. The book also has an appendix that lists all 75 guidelines and whether or not the guideline is applicable to Android development. I have listed the chapters below. I have also included an overview of what the guidelines in the chapters are targeting as described in the introduction to the chapters.

Chapter 1. Security
1. Dealing with sensitive data
2. Avoiding common injection attacks
3. Language features that can be misused to compromise security
4. Details of Java’s fine-grained security mechanism

Chapter 2. Defensive Programming
The guidelines in this chapter address areas of the Java language that can help to constrain the effect of an error or help to recover from an error. A good overall principle for defensive programming is simplicity. If a construct turns out to be complicated to implement, consider redesigning or refactoring it to reduce the complexity.

Chapter 3. Reliability
1. Guidelines that help reduce errors, and are consequently important for developing reliable Java code.
2. Guidelines that contain specific Java coding recommendations to improve software reliability

Chapter 4. Program Understandability
Program understandability is the ease with which the program can be understood—that is, the ability to determine what a program does and how it works by reading its source code and accompanying documentation. Some guidelines in this chapter are stylistic in nature; they will help a Java programmer to write clearer, more readable code. Failure to follow these guidelines could result in obscure code and design defects.

Chapter 5. Programmer Misconceptions
1. Misconceptions about Java APIs and language features
2. Assumptions and ambiguity-laced programs
3. Situations in which the programmer wanted to do one thing but ended up doing another

Appendix A: Android
This appendix describes the applicability of the guidelines in this book to developing Java apps for the Android platform.

I really liked the way the chapter on defensive programming brought the goal of simplicity to the forefront. One of the hardest things to do is maintain simplicity when coding. Often times getting through very complex situations ends with a lot of the code being in a state where it can be refactored into much cleaner code.

I find one of the biggest mistakes programmers make is saying they will come back to it later and clean it up. They honestly have the best intention of doing that and sometimes even come back to do that. When they do they realize that the big ball of mud they made just getting the problem resolved will take too much time to relearn. What they had done two weeks prior gets left alone with the thought, it isn't broke, so I'll just leave it. Cleaning it up while it is fresh in your head is what needs to become a habit, otherwise never cleaning up will become your habit.

One of the really nice features of the book is that the author's include references to the rules that apply from The CERT Oracle Secure Coding Standard for Java. All of the rules are available on line- just google "CERT Oracle Secure Coding Standard for Java". Once there you just plug the code used in the book into the search and you're taken to the rule. The rule has more information and more code samples.

They also include references back to the online The Java Virtual Machine Specification- Java SE 7 Edition. Having these references really helps you get any additional information to help you fully understand the topic at hand.

Another thing I really like is that they show tons of noncompliant code examples and compliant solutions. It really helps to have the examples along with the explanations.

In the beginning of the book the authors say "While primarily designed for building reliable and secure systems, these guidelines are also useful for achieving other quality attributes such as safety, dependability, robustness, availability, and maintainability." I must agree and say that they have really provided a treasure chest of wisdom in this book. Following the guidelines in this book will go a long way in helping you achieve the quality attributes listed above in your architecture.

All in all I highly recommend this book to all Java developers. It is a must read for you. I also recommend to developers of other languages that want to gain new insight into guidelines that they can apply in their language of choice.

Java Coding Guidelines: 75 Recommendations for Reliable and Secure Programs (SEI Series in Software Engineering)

More Stories By Tad Anderson

Tad Anderson has been doing Software Architecture for 18 years and Enterprise Architecture for the past few.

@CloudExpo Stories
We are all here because we are sold on the transformative promise of The Cloud. But what good is all of this ephemeral, on-demand infrastructure if your usage doesn't actually improve the agility and speed of your business? How must Operations adapt in order to avoid stifling your Cloud initiative? In his session at DevOps Summit, Damon Edwards, co-founder and managing partner of the DTO Solutions, will highlight the successful organizational, process, and tooling patterns of high-performing c...
The definition of IoT is not new, in fact it’s been around for over a decade. What has changed is the public's awareness that the technology we use on a daily basis has caught up on the vision of an always on, always connected world. If you look into the details of what comprises the IoT, you’ll see that it includes everything from cloud computing, Big Data analytics, “Things,” Web communication, applications, network, storage, etc. It is essentially including everything connected online from ha...
Software-driven innovation is becoming a primary approach to how businesses create and deliver new value to customers. A survey of 400 business and IT executives by the IBM Institute for Business Value showed businesses that are more effective at software delivery are also more profitable than their peers nearly 70 percent of the time (1). DevOps provides a way for businesses to remain competitive, applying lean and agile principles to software development to speed the delivery of software that ...
Docker offers a new, lightweight approach to application portability. Applications are shipped using a common container format and managed with a high-level API. Their processes run within isolated namespaces that abstract the operating environment independently of the distribution, versions, network setup, and other details of this environment. This "containerization" has often been nicknamed "the new virtualization." But containers are more than lightweight virtual machines. Beyond their small...
The move in recent years to cloud computing services and architectures has added significant pace to the application development and deployment environment. When enterprise IT can spin up large computing instances in just minutes, developers can also design and deploy in small time frames that were unimaginable a few years ago. The consequent move toward lean, agile, and fast development leads to the need for the development and operations sides to work very closely together. Thus, DevOps become...
Cloud Expo 2014 TV commercials will feature @ThingsExpo, which was launched in June, 2014 at New York City's Javits Center as the largest 'Internet of Things' event in the world.

ARMONK, N.Y., Nov. 20, 2014 /PRNewswire/ --  IBM (NYSE: IBM) today announced that it is bringing a greater level of control, security and flexibility to cloud-based application development and delivery with a single-tenant version of Bluemix, IBM's

An entirely new security model is needed for the Internet of Things, or is it? Can we save some old and tested controls for this new and different environment? In his session at @ThingsExpo, New York's at the Javits Center, Davi Ottenheimer, EMC Senior Director of Trust, reviewed hands-on lessons with IoT devices and reveal a new risk balance you might not expect. Davi Ottenheimer, EMC Senior Director of Trust, has more than nineteen years' experience managing global security operations and asse...
The major cloud platforms defy a simple, side-by-side analysis. Each of the major IaaS public-cloud platforms offers their own unique strengths and functionality. Options for on-site private cloud are diverse as well, and must be designed and deployed while taking existing legacy architecture and infrastructure into account. Then the reality is that most enterprises are embarking on a hybrid cloud strategy and programs. In this Power Panel at 15th Cloud Expo (http://www.CloudComputingExpo.com...
Explosive growth in connected devices. Enormous amounts of data for collection and analysis. Critical use of data for split-second decision making and actionable information. All three are factors in making the Internet of Things a reality. Yet, any one factor would have an IT organization pondering its infrastructure strategy. How should your organization enhance its IT framework to enable an Internet of Things implementation? In his session at Internet of @ThingsExpo, James Kirkland, Chief Ar...
Leysin American School is an exclusive, private boarding school located in Leysin, Switzerland. Leysin selected an OpenStack-powered, private cloud as a service to manage multiple applications and provide development environments for students across the institution. Seeking to meet rigid data sovereignty and data integrity requirements while offering flexible, on-demand cloud resources to users, Leysin identified OpenStack as the clear choice to round out the school's cloud strategy. Additional...
The security devil is always in the details of the attack: the ones you've endured, the ones you prepare yourself to fend off, and the ones that, you fear, will catch you completely unaware and defenseless. The Internet of Things (IoT) is nothing if not an endless proliferation of details. It's the vision of a world in which continuous Internet connectivity and addressability is embedded into a growing range of human artifacts, into the natural world, and even into our smartphones, appliances, a...
Technology is enabling a new approach to collecting and using data. This approach, commonly referred to as the "Internet of Things" (IoT), enables businesses to use real-time data from all sorts of things including machines, devices and sensors to make better decisions, improve customer service, and lower the risk in the creation of new revenue opportunities. In his General Session at Internet of @ThingsExpo, Dave Wagstaff, Vice President and Chief Architect at BSQUARE Corporation, discuss the ...
"BSQUARE is in the business of selling software solutions for smart connected devices. It's obvious that IoT has moved from being a technology to being a fundamental part of business, and in the last 18 months people have said let's figure out how to do it and let's put some focus on it, " explained Dave Wagstaff, VP & Chief Architect, at BSQUARE Corporation, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at @ThingsExpo, held Nov 4-6, 2014, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.
The 4th International DevOps Summit, co-located with16th International Cloud Expo – being held June 9-11, 2015, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY – announces that its Call for Papers is now open. Born out of proven success in agile development, cloud computing, and process automation, DevOps is a macro trend you cannot afford to miss. From showcase success stories from early adopters and web-scale businesses, DevOps is expanding to organizations of all sizes, including the world's large...
Verizon Enterprise Solutions is simplifying the cloud-purchasing experience for its clients, with the launch of Verizon Cloud Marketplace, a key foundational component of the company's robust ecosystem of enterprise-class technologies. The online storefront will initially feature pre-built cloud-based services from AppDynamics, Hitachi Data Systems, Juniper Networks, PfSense and Tervela. Available globally to enterprises using Verizon Cloud, Verizon Cloud Marketplace provides a one-stop shop fo...
"Our premise is Docker is not enough. That's not a bad thing - we actually love Docker. At ActiveState all our products are based on open source technology and Docker is an up-and-coming piece of open source technology," explained Bart Copeland, President & CEO of ActiveState Software, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at DevOps Summit at Cloud Expo®, held Nov 4-6, 2014, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.
DevOps Summit 2015 New York, co-located with the 16th International Cloud Expo - to be held June 9-11, 2015, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY - announces that it is now accepting Keynote Proposals. The widespread success of cloud computing is driving the DevOps revolution in enterprise IT. Now as never before, development teams must communicate and collaborate in a dynamic, 24/7/365 environment. There is no time to wait for long development cycles that produce software that is obsolete...
Infor has announced a new feature Infor CloudSuite™ Aerospace & Defense (A&D) to aid compliance with International Traffic in Arms Regulations (ITAR). The ITAR function will serve as a complementary function for new or existing Infor CloudSuite A&D customers, to facilitate compliance for Infor customers that are creating a US defense article or performing a US defense service and wish to benefit from cloud-services. The ITAR regulation serves to manage handling and access requirements for dat...
What do a firewall and a fortress have in common? They are no longer strong enough to protect the valuables housed inside. Like the walls of an old fortress, the cracks in the firewall are allowing the bad guys to slip in - unannounced and unnoticed. By the time these thieves get in, the damage is already done and the network is already compromised. Intellectual property is easily slipped out the back door leaving no trace of forced entry. If we want to reign in on these cybercriminals, it's hig...