Starting from scratch isn’t always the best approach

Something to keep in mind. Green field isn’t always the best answer.

Here’s an example where they took a 10 year old existing application and applied UX. The end user was very satisfied with the outcome, and didn’t care about anything under the covers.

The author came to the realization that doing it this way made the most sense, as it would have taken much longer to start from scratch, and in the user’s eyes would only be marginally better.

Too often we want to re-write a system from scratch rather than update an existing one. Something to be very wary of.

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Finding Tomcat files when running inside Intellij IDEA

Investigating a problem, and created a custom logger using logback. Defined the file location as ${catalina.base}/logs/filename.log, but wasn’t sure where to find it.

Did a full drive search and discovered where Intellij stores it (at least on OSX).

To save myself future searches, it stores it in ~/Library/Caches/IntellijIdea15/tomcat folder where IntellijIdea15 will reflect the current version you’re running.

Within this directory will be folders for the various Tomcat Run Configurations. Inside the Run configurations folder will be the logs, webapps and conf folders.

More Intellij hints and tips

I’ve been using the 15 EAP, and now preview for awhile, and really appreciate the new features.

JetBrains has released another ‘Tips and Tricks’, which includes some of the new features in 15. If you’re an Intellij user, it’s well worth skimming through the list to see if you’re not using a feature you could be.

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Git: Better commit messages

To push yourself to write better commit messages, consider defining a better starting template.

Place the following text into a .git-message.txt file in your home directory:

# If applied, this commit will...
# Explain why this change is being made
# Provide links to any relevant tickets, articles or other resources

Then do

git config commit.template $HOME/.git-message.txt

Now when you do a commit, the above comments will appear and remind you of the important parts of a commit message.

Obviously adjust it according to your project’s standards and requirements.