Nine Days

So, my new task at work was to whip together a satellite tracking system given some basic parameters. In 9 days.

This entails integrating with Analytical Graphics Inc's STK server, showing the results using the Google Earth browser plugin, generating the KML for the plugin, and surfacing all of this in Jive Software's SBS 4.0 collaboration environment.

Technologies involved:

  • Java
  • Javascript
  • HTML
  • Freemarker Templates
  • Spring
  • Struts
  • Google Earth plugin
  • KML
  • Schemas
  • WSDL
  • Maven
  • testNG
  • CSS
  • Direct Web Remoting (DWR)

Step 1: Extend the functionality of a KLM engine I had previously created to support the functionality necessary to draw the satellite path. This engine was generated from the KML schema specification. Write test cases in Java/testNG. (Test Next Generation - it's basically an easier JUnit).

Step 2: Generate STK web service functionality from WSDLs. Had to translate the calls from the C# of the current example. Write test cases.

Step 3. Integrate Steps 1 & 2, and write test cases to verify that they work.

Step 4. Write a Jive SBS plugin for displaying basic query entry fields and Google Earth.

Step 5: Write JavaScript classes to help manage the screen data and validation. Doing it with a JavaScript class cleans up a lot of the clutter. It's a bit more effort to get used to doing it this way, but I've discovered that it's significantly easier for maintenance and separation of work. (It is object-oriented after all.)

Step 6: Implement DWR / AJAX functionality for calling the server with query data. Using DWR takes a short time to get used to. It allows very quick changes to data being sent to and from the server. If you use a Data Transport Object, then it's simple to deliver data to the UI with very little fuss.

Step 7: Integrate the products from Step 1 & Step 2. This is all in Java on the server. Yet it's already been tested extensively prior to hooking up to the UI.

Step 8: Test, test, test.

Step 9: Deliver to boss. Go home and pass out.

9 days.


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