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Better Java Code Generation

Written byBig Iron

October 12, 2012

Because we write a lot of code very quickly, sometimes people conclude that Java code generation is responsible for the speed we achieve.  And, in a way they’re right, although often people have in mind the old style code generators of the 70’s when they say that.

This is not your father’s code generator.

When we built our technology, we knew there are two things people hate about code generators: first, they write low quality code.  The code is not commented and it usually makes use of proprietary function calls.  Worse, the organization of the code is such that if you modify it, you will probably lose your changes when the code is regenerated.  There is no mechanism to allow you to safely put your custom code into the generated application.

Second, the old style generators are inflexible — they will write the code the way they want to do it, not the way you would do it yourself.  You can’t modify the generator program, and you can’t get access to the “stock” code it might be using to produce your particular application. If you can live with the results, fine; but if not, you’re stuck.

In our first Java code generation solution, we solved those problems, and today that same core technology powers both our Java and .NET offerings. In fact, ResQSoft® Engineer was originally built as a new development tool, and it can be used to develop a new system from scratch, or to modernize an old system where the source code has been lost.  It can even be used to create a replacement for that old Commercial Off The Shelf (COTS) software package that is costing you ever increasing license fees while moving further and further from your business needs.  With our approach, access to the legacy source code is not required.

The code generator you buy off the Internet for $500 is, of course, exactly one of these older style code generator products that produces unmaintainable and inflexible source code.  To do code generation right, you need to use a database or repository, and reusable code, and modifiable design patterns, and a lot of other things you won’t find in a brute-force single program that just spews out code.

So, one thing that sets ResQSoft® Engineer apart from other modernization technologies is that it doesn’t just do modernization — it also does new development and maintenance. That’s a big difference; how many times do you hear somebody say, “we don’t just want the same system when we modernize, we want enhancements and new functionality?”  We hear it a lot. And, we can respond, because our code writing technology is based on a completely different approach that doesn’t restrict us to just reproducing what’s in the old COBOL or Natural or Model 204 or MAPPER.  Sound interesting? Just give us a call.


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