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ProductCamp Boston: Building lean products with distributed agile teams

Posted by Igor Moochnick on 04/12/2011

A week ago (Sat 4/2/2011) gave a presentation about tips, tricks and best practices that can greatly help you to build products with the distributed teams.

Product Camp Boston 4/2/11

Thanks for the organizers of the ProductCamp (http://productcampboston.org/) and all the attendees for making a great event.


Posted in Agile, ALM, Community, Composite Applications, Continous Integration, Design, Kanban, Organization, Presentations, Thoughts, Tutorials | Leave a Comment »

Adding Watermark to GWT Textbox widget

Posted by Igor Moochnick on 06/30/2009

Let’s see how we can improve our UI by adding some watermarked “spice”:


Let’s define the primary style for the text box (textInput) and the dependent style for the watermark (textInput-watermark):

.textInput {
	border: 1px solid #C9C7BA;
	font-family:Tahoma, Verdana, Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif;
	font-size: 11px;
	padding-left: 2px;
	padding-top: 2px;

.textInput-watermark {
   /* background-image: url('images/overlay.gif');
   background-repeat: no-repeat;
   padding-left: 20px;
   vertical-align: middle; */
   font-style: italic;
   color: DarkGray;

Note that the watermark style can contain images as well (see the commented out piece).

After the styles were defined we need to add some code that will apply it to the text box. To do this I’m going to extend the default GWT TextBox. The trick is to hijack the OnBlur and OnFocus events. When the OnBlur is occurring, we’re going to show the watermark and OnFocus – hide it:

public class WatermarkedTextBox extends TextBox implements BlurHandler, FocusHandler
	String watermark;
	HandlerRegistration blurHandler;
	HandlerRegistration focusHandler;
	public WatermarkedTextBox( )
	public WatermarkedTextBox(String defaultValue)
	public WatermarkedTextBox(String defaultValue, String watermark)
	 * Adds a watermark if the parameter is not NULL or EMPTY
	 * @param watermark
	public void setWatermark(final String watermark)
		this.watermark = watermark;
		if ((watermark != null) && (watermark != ""))
			blurHandler = addBlurHandler(this);
			focusHandler = addFocusHandler(this);
			// Remove handlers

	public void onBlur(BlurEvent event)
	void EnableWatermark()
		String text = getText(); 
		if ((text.length() == 0) || (text.equalsIgnoreCase(watermark)))
			// Show watermark

	public void onFocus(FocusEvent event)
		if (getText().equalsIgnoreCase(watermark))
			// Hide watermark

Posted in Design, GWT, Java, Tutorials, Web | 10 Comments »

Principles for Scalable Service Design

Posted by Igor Moochnick on 03/10/2009


I’m preparing a presentation for the upcoming CodeCamp about the best practices in building enterprise system that can scale to the cloud and stumbled on a real gem – the Dr. Werner Vogels Availability & Consistency presentation during QCon 2007. For those who doesn’t know – Dr. Werner Vogels is VP & CTO at Amazon.com.

In this presentation Dr. Vogels in crystal clear way lays out all the principals that I was a big promoter for the last 10 years. I agree with him on 100,000% and really think that the future is with the BASE scalable systems (and not with ACID) simply because ACID propagates the error to the end user whereas BASE system deals with errors locally. I do agree that in some rare cases ACID is the easier and cheaper way to go, but still sure that even those cases is possible to implement as BASE system.

The Dr. Vogels recipie for success is build system following this menu:

  • Autonomy
  • Asynchrony
  • Controlled concurrency
  • Controlled parallelism
  • Decentralize
  • Decompose into small well-understood building blocks
  • Failure tolerant
  • Local responsibility
  • Recovery Built-in
  • Simplicity
  • Symmetry

Posted in Community, DB, Design, Presentations, Thoughts | 1 Comment »

Balsamiq – great GUI mockup tool

Posted by Igor Moochnick on 02/11/2009

Whole day worked on GUI mockups for our new product – love it!

Check Balsamiq out!



More tools of the same kind:



Posted in Design, Thoughts | Tagged: , , , | 6 Comments »

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