May 07

Canadian Citizenship Practice Test 2014

Posted: under Citizenship, Others.
Tags: , , , May 7th, 2014

We recently reviewed a few citizenship test websites. We have to admit that there have been a lot changes since we last reviewed. The best one still is Canada Citizenship Practice Test 2014. We noticed that this site continuously updated their questions database on a biweekly cadence and keeps the questions quality in a high standard.

There is another website which offers similar Online Canadian Citizenship Exam. The feature I like most is that it even provides hints based on the study guide “Discover Canada”. You can click on the small flag near each question and display the page which containing the answers to the question. This is a unique feature of all testing web sites.

Here are a list of Canadian citizenship test web pages that I think you should not miss:

Canadian Citizenship Test of Toronto 2014 Questions

Canada Citizenship Test for Alberta

Canadian Citizenship Test Questions of Vancouver

Canada Citizen Test Practice of British Columbia 2014

Canadian Citizenship Practice Test Question and Answers

Hope everyone get through the Canadian citizenship test with ease!

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Feb 06

Canadian Citizenship Test Questions for Practices

Posted: under Citizenship.
Tags: , , , , , , , February 6th, 2013

I found a good training website of preparing the Canada Citizenship Test. It provides online training and all the questions of the citizenship exam. Some of the questions are so cool that they come from the actual tests. A friend of mine said he got the almost the same questions in his citizenship test. He highly recommends this site for anyone who is preparing for the Canadian citizenship test. He is from the city of Toronto, but I think this citizenship practice website is also good for other cities like Vancouver, Montreal, Calgary, Edmonton, Ottawa, Winnipeg,  Hamilton, Kitchener, London,  Halifax, Victoria and Quebec.

One of the advantages for this practice web site is that it can give you new questions on each test. This gives a very good practice. I like this very much. Here are the links:

Canadian Citizenship Test of Toronto

Vancouver’s Canada Citizenship Test

Canadian Citizenship Test Questions of Montreal

Canada Citizen Test Practice of Calgary

Canada Citizenship Exam of Mississauga

Canadian Citizen Practice Test for City Edmonton

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Dec 22

Deploy Cloud Foundry with BOSH

Posted: under Cloud, CloudFoundry.
Tags: , , , , , December 22nd, 2012

This is a great blog for Cloud Foundry deployment. It described all the steps to deploy a complete Cloud Foundry instance from scratch. Yes, it starts from IaaS layer(vSphere) and details the process. Very easy to follow this article.

Deploy Cloud Foundry by BOSH

Here is another good document of introducing BOSH:

Cloud Foundry BOSH Introduction


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Jun 05

Crystal Jewelry: Necklace, Bracelet and Earring

Posted: under Crystal Jewelry.
Tags: , , , June 5th, 2010

The word “Ai” is the oldest symbol in the eastern Asia. It has been used to convey people’s love to friends, the neighbours, flowers, and virtually anything. Ai Jewelry, a sweet name of a jewelry series, brings love to you and ones you love.

A friend of mine has ordered a crystal necklace from the Ai Jewelry web site. It arrives in a few days with a well packaged box.

When the box opens, you see a box full of love. More information about crystal jewelry:

Quartz crystal is a colorless mineral. Silica, and the main chemical substances ordinary sand. In another environment, the jewelry type contains crystal, agate, chalcedony, quartz, and the true son of Flint’s conversion.

Perfect hexagonal crystals, hexagonal rod-like shape, often one or two cylinders, long-term as the family crystal, beautiful and magnificent links, the number of members as sharp. Crystalline silicon is a different style. Crystal Gallery’d form will be surprised at the possibility of crystalline silicon. In addition to the typical long sword, as there are other signs of Double Cone who paved the finger. There are more than 24 grams, weight about 280 kg.

Beautiful natural human crystalline impressive, human health and psychological benefits and colorful appearance, diamonds, gold could not compete. Simple and beautiful stones are used to make jewelry are very popular materials.

Crystal Bracelet and Pendants

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Mar 09

New Canadian Citizenship Test

Posted: under Citizenship.
Tags: , , , , March 9th, 2010

From March 15, 2010 on, the Canadian citizenship test is based on a new study guide: ‘Discover Canada”. Compared with the old study guide ‘A Look at Canada’, it is a more comprehensive document. If you have studied the old book but now you are required to take the new test, here is a list of the new content that you should pay attention to:

1. More details about the Canadian history. It has a section of more than 10 pages about the history of Canada and 4 pages about Modern Canada. It describes the Aboriginal peoples, British and French as the founding people of Canada. Canada’s role in two world wars is detailed. Many histroic people are introduced so you may have more names to remember before sitting for the test. It is interesting to see that the study guide admits the historic wrongdoings of the Canadian government, such as the “Head Tax”, wartime wrongs inflicted on Japanese and education of Aboriginal children.

2. There are wording changes about the Canadian government, though the concepts are mainly the same. In the old book, it states Canada’s government has a system of parliamentary government. It is now in the new book as “a federal state, a parliamentary democracy and a constitutional monarchy.”

3. The concept of Sovereign is emphasized in the new book. A bill must be finally approved by ‘royal assent’.

4. The section about federal election is mostly unchanged except for the election cycle. In 2007, new laws passed to force a general election at least every 4 years and has a fixed date. The new book reflects this lastest change in legislation.

5. Justice System is the new content not seen in the old book, so you must know about it.

6. Canada Regions are now in more details. The new book covers each province/territory separately. Therefore, you must know at least the region you are in.

7. Canadian symbols now include “Coat of Arm and Motto”, honours to Canadians, sports and holidays.

If you are preparing for the Canadian citizenship test after March 15, 2010, you can use a good online practice web site which provides practice questions of the New Canadian Citizenship Test.

Related Links:
US Citizenship Application for people to apply for their American citizenship and prepare for the US Citizenship Test.

Crystal jewelry, necklaces, crystal earrings, ring crystal bracelets

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Jan 18

Java SE 6u18 Performance Improvements

Posted: under JavaFX.
Tags: , , , , January 18th, 2010

Unlike the u17, the u18 update is not released for security, instead, it introduces many improvements on performance.

Faster Jar File Creation If you application need to create a lot of jar files, you will see about 20 percent improvement.

Hotspot VM Enhancement This includes some hardware-aware features, garbage collection improvements, class loading optimization and compile time optimization on code generation. The improved G1 garbage collector is still not yet ready for production, unless you have business support contract with Sun.

Application Startup Time Improvements If you are using JavaFX, you will notice about 20 percent improvement when launching an FX application. Web start and applet application can now download jar files concurrently.

Other improvements include runtime UI application performance, zip file reading and deployment updates. For more info, please check out here.

Other links:

JavaFX Plug-in for Eclipse 3.5.x
javaFX used in Winter Olympics 2010
Review on Essential JavaFX
JavaFX How-tos

Australian Citizenship Test
Free British citizenship Test
US Citizenship Application

Java SE U18的性能提高

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Dec 22

JavaFX Used in Vancouver Olympics

Posted: under JavaFX.
Tags: , December 22nd, 2009

I am not sure if this is the first web site that uses JavaFX for production, the official web site of the Vancouver Winter Olympics 2010 is using JavaFX for displaying the medal history of the Winter Olympics Games. In this winter, Vancouver is probably hot for Olympics, so is JavaFX. ( Check it out here: )

This is a very cool demo (oh, I should say real world application) of the JavaFX visualization technologies. Overall, it works well except for some animations were not so smooth. Though the same effects can be achieved by Flash, I would say this is a good start for JavaFX going into practical use. Hope to see more and more such applications in JavaFX.

Other Links:
Games in JavaFX
JavaFX Resources
British Citizenship Test: Life in the United Kingdom Test for settlement and Citizenship

UK Citizenship Test on iPhone

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Dec 04

Review on the Book “Essential JavaFX”

Posted: under JavaFX.
Tags: , , December 4th, 2009

It has been a year since the official release of JavaFX. JavaFX had gone through 3 major releases and now the current version is 1.2.1. There are a few books out there on JavaFX. Today I would introduce the book “Essential JavaFX” by Gail Anderson and Paul Anderson. The book is also available in Chinese and it was translated by Sun Asian Globalization Center. You can read my review in Chinese.

Gail and Paul are the founders of Anderson Software Group, Inc. They are both experienced software professionals and instructors. They have coauthored a few textbooks. “Essential JavaFX” is their latest book for people to learn the JavaFX script language. The JavaFX team at Sun had provided technical guidance for the book. The content conformed the JavaFX 1.2 SDK. For this reason, the book can serve as an excellent textbook for students or beginners. Other JavaFX programmers may also find it helpful as a reference resource.

As stated in the preface, the book is primarily for developers with some previous experience in any programming language(not necessarily Java). Readers without any programming experienced are advised to first learn some language such as Java or C++. In my opinion, because the strong intrinsic relationship between JavaFX and Java, I would consider that Java programmers are the most likely to learn JavaFX and have the lowest barrier to master it. Other developers with OO (Object Oriented) programming experience may also find familiar concepts and syntax in JavaFX.

I have multiple years of experience in various programming languages such as VB, Java and C++. When I start to learn a new language, I usually go through a HelloWorld like example to quickly understand its style and characteristics. Then I will skim through its grammar or syntax. After I got some basic ideas, I will dive into the details of each language construct. I find this approach extremely effective. Since the chapters of the book are organized in the same way, I find it very easy to follow.

The first chapter tells you how to download and setup your development environment. You basically need JavaFX SDK and NetBeans IDE. If you have experience on modern IDE like NetBeans or Eclipse, it won’t be difficult for you to install everything. A working development environment speeds up your progress in learning because you can try out the sample code while you are reading the book.

The second chapter provides an overview of JavaFX by an example called GuitarTuner. This example gets you on fast track to understand key concepts in JavaFX, such as declarative syntax, scene graph, binding and animation. After the first two chapters, you will probably get a feel of what functionalities can be achieved by JavaFX and how they are done in the language.

The third chapter is about the language elements, such as variables and types, operators and expressions, classes and objects, functions and triggers. This chapter may seem tedious for experienced programmers. However, these are the fundamentals of a language, so my suggestion is to go through it fast and come back from time to time for language references.

The next two chapters introduce the graphical objects and UI components. You need to know them in order to construct your UI by using nodes, shapes, layouts, skins and SWING wrappers provided by JavaFX. If you know SWING or Java2D well, you may be able to identify some links between JavaFX and Java.

The sixth chapter elaborates on a JavaFX project “Piano” to demonstrate various features to build a rich application. By digesting this example, readers learn how to put everything together to build a JavaFX application. After finishing this chapter, a Java programmer should be able to write applications in JavaFX.

Chapter 7 and 8 illustrate two important features of JavaFX: animation and image handling, which include topics on Timelines, Keyframes, interpolation, path, transition, Image and ImageView classes. If you want your application to get “richer” and have better user experience, you should spend more time on these two chapters.

Chapter 9 gives more details on getting internet data through RESTful web services. Getting remote data is almost a must for any RIA. Readers will learn two classes of JavaFX: PullParser and HttpRequest to retrieve and parse JSON or XML data. An example shows how to invoke web services from flickr’s photo services.

The last chapter describes how to develop a JavaFX mobile application. The Mobile Emulator in NetBeans is introduced. If you are going to develop a mobile application, you should definitely read this chapter to understand some mobile-specific issues. As an example, the authors walk you through the process of migrating a desktop JavaFX program to run on a mobile device.

In general, the content of the book “Essential JavaFX” is easy to be understood and the examples are quite instructive. I think the authors probably aim at writing a textbook for junior or intermediate programmers, hence some advanced features of JavaFX are not covered, such as multi-media and reflection. To sum up, I would recommend it to people who are about to learn the JavaFX language. It helps you learn JavaFX effectively.

P.S. if you are interested in other JavaFX books, you can check out Jonathan Giles’ blog of Mini ‘Pro JavaFX Platform’ Book Review. I may write some comparison of a few JavaFX books too. So check back my blog later.

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