The original purpose of this blog was computer-related, so here’s my first related post.

Last week I dealt with pessimisted entity beans. There are also optimistic entity beans. Wait! Before I lose you in what Dr. Seuss describes as goobly-gook, let me explain. Not what entity beans have to do with pessimism, but more about how we use every-day terminology to explain how systems actually work.

I work in an IT shop, where our primary goal is to keep a variety of systems running. Some are new, some are old, but all must run, and most must communicate with each other. A common line heard in IT shops is “system A won’t talk to system B” or “system B is hanging up on System A”. Everyone knows that systems don’t really talk… they only send electrons to each other on a wire. But imagine calling someone and telling them that “your system’s electrons are the wrong ones, their order is incorrect” or something like that. It’d be chaos. Instead we assign human characterstics to our machines, and talk about them as if they were human, and perform humanoid tasks, such as talking, running, etc.

Which brings us back to pessimistic entity beans. A bean is really a piece of java code (java is a programming language). An entity bean is a piece of java code that keeps track of a specific piece of information. A pessimistic entity bean knows that it’s not the source of record, so in true Eyeore style it always checks back with it’s database (source of record) before releasing any information. An optimistic bean knows it’s the source, and release the information in Tigger style, without doing any checking.

Gotta run, one of my critical systems isn’t talking to it’s archive manager, on port 0xbeef. 😉

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