Re: Placement of Constants - again

"Rhino" <>
Thu, 27 May 2010 13:37:39 -0400
"Tom Anderson" <> wrote in message

On Thu, 27 May 2010, Rhino wrote:

It's just one line of code:

   ColorPalette colorPalette = ColorPalette.BLUES;

but I'm really struggling with where it needs to be.

Presumably, you have a Resume class (or even better, a
ResumePresentation). Who makes instances of that? Where does it get its
information from? Where, for instance, is your name stored?

The DATA on the resume is all stored in a ResourceBundle, including my name,
email address, job target, experience and all of that. The labels used to
present that information, like "Job Target", "Formal Education" etc. are
likewise stored in the same ResourceBundle.

I have a Resume class. It's job is to find the obtain the information from
the ResourceBundle. It is basically a bunch of small getters, like
getJobTargetText() which returns the label "Job Target" (it would return the
French translation of Job Target if I create a French-language resume) and
getJobTargetData() which returns the jobs that I am targeting with this

ResumeFileGenerator kicks off most of the classes which create resumes. I'm
not sure the proper name of this kind of class - driver? framework? - but it
instantiates all but one of the classes that generate a resume.
ResumeFileGenerator is a plain Java application, not a servlet or whatever.
The code in ResumeFileGenerator looks like this:

public class ResumeFileGenerator {

public static void main(String[] args) {

  ResumeFileGenerator resumeFileGenerator = new ResumeFileGenerator();


  System.out.println("\n===Program ends===");


public ResumeFileGenerator() {

  localizationUtils = LocalizationUtils.getInstance();

  resumeResources = localizationUtils.getResources(Locale.getDefault(),

/* Establish the color palette that will be used by these classes. */

  ColorPalette colorPalette = ColorPalette.RC_BLUES;

/* Get database connection. */

/* Set up logging. */



* Generates various resume files.


public void generateResumes() {

/* Get an instance of the data that will be used by all of the resume
writers. */

Resume resume = new Resume(resumeResources);

/* Write the resume in HTML format. */

ResumeFileWriterHtml resumeFileWriterHtml = new ResumeFileWriterHtml();


/* Write the resume in ASCII format. */

ResumeFileWriterAscii resumeFileWriterAscii = new ResumeFileWriterAscii();

resumeFileWriterAscii.writeResume(OUTPUT_FILE_PATH +
ResumeFileGeneratorConstants.RESUME_ASCII_FILE, resume);

/* Write the resume in property format. */

ResumeFileWriterProperty resumeFileWriterProperty = new

resumeFileWriterProperty.writeResume(OUTPUT_FILE_PATH +

/* Write the resume in PDF format. */

ResumeFileWriterPdf resumeFileWriterPdf = new ResumeFileWriterPdf();

resumeFileWriterPdf.writeResume(OUTPUT_FILE_PATH +
ResumeFileGeneratorConstants.RESUME_PDF_FILE, resume);




That's the gist of it.

ResumeApplet is a standalone applet that also uses the colors from the color
palette for painting the resume.

I don't have a ResumePresentation class at all. Is a "Presentation" class
part of one of the design patterns? I'm afraid I don't know those very
well.... If I should be using a particular design pattern here, which one
should I use? I have some Design Pattern links and can find examples of the
desired patterns use if you can point me to the one I should be using.....

Several of the classes write the word "Resume" in one or another places
and I am trying to write it so that the acute accents on the two e's
appear correctly. I've got several constants for the different

 public static final String RESUME_HTML_LOWERCASE =
 public static final String RESUME_HTML_CAMELCASE =
 public static final String RESUME_UNICODE_LOWERCASE =
 public static final String RESUME_UNICODE_CAMELCASE =

I need the first two in HTML documents that are being generated

Not necessarily - if you're using a character encoding that contains the e
with an acute accent, like UTF-8 or ISO-Latin-1, you can just use it
directly, rather than writing an escape.

and the latter two in ASCII,

You aren't going to have a lot of luck using those in ASCII documents,
considering that those strings have non-ASCII characters in. Did you mean
'plain text (in some suitable character encoding)'?

Honestly, I don't remember why I created the escaped versions any more. They
seemed necessary at the time and they work in the sense that the accents
appear where they should but I may be able to revise them to simply use a
direct e-acute rather than the escaped versions. I'll look into that and
change it if I can. However, I still need each version of each string in at
least two different places so I still need to understand where to place the

PDF, and CSS documents that are being generated.
Since each of these is used in at least two different classes, I'm not
sure where best to place these.

Firstly, i'd be tempted not to do this with constants, but to write the
string once (in a resource bundle), and use methods to (a) escape
characters for HTML and (b) twiddle the case of the leading letter. Then,
if you change the string in question, you only have to change one string
literal, rather than four.

Fair enough.

Secondly, if there is a constant which is used by several classes, and
more than one of them has a strong claim to ownership of the constant,
then it can certainly go in some constant-holding class or interface. Such
things are to be avoided where possible, but are the right solution when
that is not possible.

There are indeed multiple classes that use each string and no obvious
candidate for which one is more of an owner than any of the others.

I'm not really trying to get permission to use a Constants class here; I
just want to make sure I've exhausted all other reasonable alternatives
before using a Constants class. I'm just not sure if I have exhausted all
the other reasonable possibilities or whether I'm overlooking better

All of the classes in the project share a common set of ResourceBundles.
(I want to keep open the possibility of generating resumes in foreign
languages since I have a working knowledge of two other languages and
could picture working in countries where those languages are spoken. I
haven't actually translated phrases like "Job Target" or "Format
Education" to the other languages but I _could_ and might do that.) The
base name of the ResourceBundles is used in both ResumeFileGenerator and
ResumeApplet. Where should I put its definition so that both classes use
the exact same name?

Same problem as above. This belongs to whoever is in charge of making
Resume objects. If there are several places where Resume objects are made,
then refactor until there is only one, and put it there.

Hmm. I'm not sure I'm understanding you correctly. Based on my description
so far (in the original post and this followup) would you agree that
ResumeFileGenerator is the place where the Resume objects are made? Or are
you talking about the specific classes that generate each Resume, like
ResumeFileWriterAscii, ResumeFileWriterHtml, ResumeFileWriterPdf and so
forth? And what about my standalone ResumeApplet? The resume in that is NOT
created by ResumeFileGenerator.

Lastly, let me raise the case of what I'll call a "convenience constant".
I tend to prefer writing the name of a String constant called NEWLINE
rather than a "\n" in my statements simply because the former seems a
little clearer to me. I've used this technique in many classes in many
projects so this constant has much wider scope than just this one
project. Would it make sense to have a class of constants in my Common
project and just accumulate any similar widely used constants there? If
not, what is a better way to handle this kind of situation? Let me stress
that these "convenience constants" are not a big deal to me; if good OO
design opposes the very notion and prefers use of "\n" in all cases
rather than a constant, that's fine by me. I'm just trying to understand
how a constant that is widely used in many projects should be handled.

Firstly, you should probably be saying
System.getProperty("line.separator") rather than "\n", so you get the
right line ending on heathen platforms.

Good point ;-)

And that basically eliminates the issue in this case....

Secondly, i know of no OO or general programming principle that opposes
constants like that in the general case. The same analysis as above
applies: if they're owned equally by several classes, but them in some
neutral place, like a constants class.

Okay, that sounded logical to me but I'm trying to be sure I haven't
overlooked other important considerations.

Even if my NEWLINE constant is not an issue any more, I can picture other
constants that may arise that ARE used in many classes. It's good to know
that some constants in a Common project that are (potentially) shared by all
projects are not going to present a problem.

One (or more) of the responders to my original question said that classes
containing Constants weren't absolutely unthinkable, although there were
usually better ways. I haven't stumbled on exceptions that really DO
belong in a FooConstants class have I?

Sounds like it.

I'm surprised. I had assumed that I was just missing some obvious (to you)
alternate techniques....


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