Summary - Elliotte Rusty Harold Visit with ACGNJ Java Users Group

The April ACGNJ Java Users Group meeting featured guest speaker, Elliotte Rusty Harold.  His presentation was entitled, "Exceptions: I'm Telling You for the Last Time."

Elliotte discussed the three rules of using exceptions:
  • Rule #1 - try blocks should be long, not short
  • Rule #2:
    • Checked exceptions indicate environmental problems.
    • Runtime, i.e., unchecked exceptions indicate program errors.
  • Rule #3 - If you can't handle it, bubble it.
Harold provided his reasoning for not using exceptions.  He stated, "If we haven't learned how to use exceptions within the last 20 years, will we learn over the next 20 years?  Maybe exceptions are just too hard.  And if exceptions are too hard, then what about Java features such as lambdas and data binding?"

Sun forgot to document exceptions when they were first introduced in Java 1, alpha 3.  Elliotte encouraged everyone to search for the original white papers by James Gosling, Patrick Naughton, and Bill Joy.


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