Rediscovering a Project from 2005

Posted by Matt Farmer on October 14, 2013 · 3 mins read

So, Friday I rediscovered my old SourceForge from circa 2005. This, naturally, included some code that I wrote back then. One of them, in particular, I’m pretty stoked to have uncovered again.

In 2005, I was an avid user of a pretty popular website known as deviantArt, an online art-sharing community. I still periodically log in and check my notifications, but at the time I was most active on the site I spent most of my time in their chat rooms, collectively termed the “deviantArt messaging network” and abbreviated “dAmn.”

At the time, the web interface for participating in chats wasn’t something I enjoyed using. To be frank, it was buggy and broke a lot. So, I wrote a chat client called dJC (short for dAmn Java Client), which has been stored by SourceForge since then. Friday I converted the cvs repository I was using to manage the code to a git repository and threw it up on my GitHub account here.

I noticed a few things from poking around this code. First of which was that I had a lot of fun with using the “damn” acronym as a file prefix. The following is a selection of java source file names from the project: 


My sense of humor in 2005 was high brow.

The next thing I remembered was this segment of code, which I used to automatically rejoin me to a chat when a moderator kicked me. Word to the wise: if you write a chat client with such auto-rejoining code in it, it’s a good idea to put in a maximum number of retries within a particular timeframe, or you will inevitably become the punching bag for the moderators because it’s really fun to watch someone get kicked and then rejoin immediately. (It’s a bit less fun on the receiving end.)

Stumbling across this old project so many years later was good for a healthy dose of nostalgia.  The code is riddled with silly things like manually handling HTTP requests, and other nasty nastiness. In spite of that it’s pretty cool to get a snapshot of how far I’ve come over the last eight years. Also, for all the things I did wrong in that code I’m left to admit that me from eight years ago did a lot of things right, too. So, that’s pretty cool.

Oh, and according to someone on deviantArt, it still works as of August 5th, 2013:

When I tried Friday, I couldn’t get it to log in, but I suspect if you were already logged in (or have a copy of the user token you need to chat with) then the actual chatting still functions. But, it’s still pretty darn cool that something I wrote in 2005 still worked as of late 2013.

Oh, and what triggered the rediscovery of my Sourceforge account, you ask? A recruiter email sent to me at my email address (which forwards to my personal email address).  My habit of checking the “To:” header on recruiter emails (to figure out how they know me) paid off in spades this time around.