Technical Documents - Incubation


This section of the site is focused on documents that are either uncompleted, but in skeleton form or documents that are in process of being completed, but for which there might already be some value to others, or for which insights from others are invited.

As documents are completed are become more stable, they will be moved into the published section of the technical documents. For this reason, it is probably not safe to directly link to items in this section; however, I will try to maintain a pointer for any move documents with a reference to the final publication. Additionally as these documents are in the "incubation" stage, they are subject to potentially significant changes prior to publication.


This section contains the following documents and provides guidance on the current status/maturity of these documents:

What is architecture? - early development stages - This document seeks to summarize over 10 years of experience in various IT architecture roles. There is considerable confusion as to the role and scope of the architect within IT. While this article has been under development for several years, there is considerable work remaining to be done. The development of the article will be measured and deliberate in order to carefully frame and develop my ideas in a clear and concise manner.

Platform independent mail server - Published as Simple Windows SMTP Server. Therefore, it is no longer available in this section.

Open Source Mail System Implementation - initial concept completed and general outline provided - This document seeks to provide guidance to those seeking to understand the current state of open source software with regard to designing and implementing enterprise email services. In addition, the document attempts to provide guidance to the technical decision makers regarding implementation trade offs and the impacts of the various offerings on the overall solution.

Stomp and ActiveMQ Integration - early development, incomplete - I recently was required to integrate ActiveMQ with both PHP and Java. As a result, I also found the need to use the MapMessage format, but spent considerable time trying to get the three technologies to interoperate correctly. I was able to find some information on-line, but most of it was incorrect, probably due to being outdated. In this article, I will show you how I was able to get the two technologies to interoperate and the details of my solution.

Enterprise Directory Services with OpenLDAP - early development, incomplete - This document provides information regarding the state of various open source products with regard to building an enterprise directory services/security infrastructure. It will provide specific examples of how this integration can be accomplished as well as pros and cons of specific open source tools and their impact on the overall design and architecture of the solution. It is intended as a guideline and information source for those looking to build an enterprise based on open source tools and therefore provides the authors experience and views on how this has been accomplished in at least one instance. From this, the reader can either use this guide as a template for their own implementation or use this document as a basis for further investigation and study.

Xen 4.1 on Linux 3.2 Dom0 with PV DomU - missing some configuration for the domU/guest kernel config, incomplete - This document describes how to install Xen 4.1 on a Linux 3.2.x kernel with paravirutalized (PV) guests. Both the dom0 and domU are "headless" (do not require a monitor). They are also minimal installs with no GUI (all command line).

Working with DocBook - early development - incomplete - This document describes some of the nuiances that I ahve found working with DocBook and expecially with using the DocBook XSL to transform to HTML.

Working with Apache Forrest - early development - incomplete - This article describes the work I have done with Apache Forrest in order to develop my personal publishing pipeline that is heavily based on DocBook as the content format with Apache Forrest as the publishing pipeline for publishing my website (primary goal) and rendering DocBook into other formats.

Content Ideas/Concepts

The following are content ideas or concepts that I am considering developing, but that I have not yet begun the process of authoring, editing, or publishing. If you have any opinions regarding the priorities or desire to see any of these ideas come to fruition, please drop me an email.

Apache James Mailet

I have recently developed a mailet that is called when users respond to notifications of changes or new content on a collaborative website and posts those responses back to the site. The purpose of this mailet is to provide a more convenient way for road warriors or highly mobile users to interact with the site without them having to sit in front of a computer to respond to discussions or questions posted on the site. Most of these users have mobile phones on which they receive email notifications. This is a logical extension of the notification architecture already in place.

This document would describe and detail the following information:

  • Customization of the James infrastructure for specific application needs (where to put libraries, how to customize logging, what directories and files are required)
  • Integration and development of James mailets with Eclipse (suggestions or project layout, working with source control/subversion, etc)
  • Developing a custom mailet (this is surprisingly easy and trivial!)
  • How to test your mailet - I am currently using JUnit in several potentially "unique" ways that may be of interest"

This would essentially be a follow on to the existing work I have documented in the "Platform independent mail server" document currently in incubation.


While I have been focused on working and documenting various aspects of Open Source software and efforts, and this will remain a primary focus, more due to the critical need for this type of documentation in the FOSS arena than any particular preference, I have been doing quite a bit of work with .NET and WPF as well as LINQ recently and as a result I am considering developing a white paper focused on pointing out the differences and areas of potential between the .NET WPF and Java technologies. I think both platforms have their strengths and weaknesses and that each could learn from the other.

This document would be focused on where I think WPF has advantages and where I think some Java technologies have advantages, especially around the notion of the Windows/Visual Studio "code behind" and the Java Spring framework. Additionally, this paper could also focus on some of the key design decisions that should be considered when building a WPF application and where the value of this technology can really be leveraged and where it still lacks or lags behind and thus areas or concepts that should be avoided when developing with WPF.