Tuesday, 3 March 2009


For the rest of this week, I'm following the CoreSpring training course in Amsterdam on the Spring Framework.

My day didn't get off to a particularly good start as the queue at the train station meant that I had to catch my train without first getting myself any breakfast, as I'd originally planned. Thanks to the office's policy of travelling first class, though, I was at least able to find myself a seat on the crowded train and do some work on my laptop in relative peace. I arrived at Amsterdam Sloterdijk 45 minutes before the course was due to start, but thanks to getting myself disoriented and stuck on the wrong side of the train tracks, I made into the course room with 5 minutes to spare.

Ready then for the next panic.... found myself a laptop to use, and then the instructor mentioned that the laptops were only for those who had pre-ordered them. Had I pre-ordered one? Well, I have no idea, as the training was booked by our training department and no-one communicated anything to me about it. As luck would have it, no-one claimed the laptop, so perhaps it did have my name on it after all.

I've been using Spring for a couple of years now, and whilst I'm fairly familiar with the basic concepts and usage, I'm also aware of some gaps in my knowledge, especially concerning all the additional functionality that Spring can provide. Whilst I got off to an easy start this morning, which covered the basics, I still picked up some useful tips and tricks, both about Spring and the Spring IDE (an Eclipse plugin).

The course is split into 50% theory and 50% lab work, giving everyone a chance to practice the concepts for themselves. In addition to the core labs, there are some additional optional labs provided - perfect if like me you are a quick worker. Something I liked very much about the labs was that they were set up so that all the functionality is demonstrated using JUnit tests. A great way of introducing people to test driven development, without them necessarily realizing it.

3 more days to go on the course, and I'm looking forward to them!

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