In Java a local variable has to be initialized before it can be used. I always thought the reason for imposing this rule was to ensure that variables are never used with junk values if a programmer forgets to initialize them. This would result in runtime bugs. However while reading "Java Security - Scott Oaks" I realized that there is a also a security concern in allowing usage of initialized variables. A rogue programmer could create a very large uninitialized variable and then inspect the contents of it's memory location. Such an operation could compromise the security of the machine on which the program (applet) is being run.
Sometime back I registered for the Functional Programming Principles in Scala , on Coursera. I have been meaning to learn Scala from a while, but have been putting it on the back burner because of other commitments. But when I saw this course being offered by Martin Odersky, on Coursera , I just had to enroll in it. This course is a 7 week course. I will blog my learning experience and notes here for the next seven weeks (well actually six, since the course started on Sept 18th). The first step was to install the required tools: JDK - Since this is my work machine, I already have a couple of JDK's installed SBT - SBT is the Scala Build Tool. Even though I have not looked into it in detail, it seems like a replacement for Maven. I am sure we will use it for several things, however upto now I only know about two uses for it - to submit assignments (which must be a feature added by the course team), and to start the Scala console. Installed sbt from here , and added the path