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Statistical Computation Tool on the NetBeans Platform

My name is Artur Kustra (blog). I've always enjoyed computer programming and scientific research since I was a kid. After civil engineering studies at the Technical University of Zielona Gora, I finished software engineering studies at the Wroclaw Higher School in Applied Informatics.

Right now, I'm working as a civil engineer fulltime, teacher in my spare time, and web developer as a freelancer. I live in Lower Silesian District, Zgorzelec County, Poland. In my free time I work on my doctorate in building mechanics and finite element methods. I also was in the NetBeans Polish translation team.

Statistical Computation Tool 

During my research, there is a need for analysis data received from experiments in mechanics. I didn't want to create a complicated tool or R clone, just a tool for the most basic needed computations in statistics. The project can compute:

  • minimum and maximum values
  • means
  • sums
  • variances
  • percentiles
  • skewness
  • kurtosis
  • covariances
  • correlations for static and rolling regression analysis
  • charts for one and two data sources with correlation aspects
  • three layered neural network prediction
It is also possible to import data from disk or web locations. Here is a screenshot:

NetBeans Platform

I'm familiar with NetBeans IDE since its 4.0 release but as a generic framework for applications just for about a year. The first look was not so good because of the NetBeans Platform's complexity, so I initially preferred other frameworks. To me, the NetBeans Platform was at first very difficult to know, because of the new terms it introduces and because of the way it works. Later, I spent a lot of time reading source code because, at that time, there wasn't much information about it. Nowadays, though, there's many books, presentations, websites, and so on.

I started to work with the NetBeans Platform because it looked very promising. I also wanted to get new experiences in Java programming. When I started to write some examples, it turned out that the basic NetBeans Platform APIs are quite easy. Also, porting from a Swing-like application is very fast, which is vary handy when you have existing tools.

Today the NetBeans Platform is the first choice for my projects. It really saves a lot of time and it enforces well-structured software. I use mostly the basic NetBeans APIs, such as the Nodes, Window System, Data System, and File System, as well as the Lookup for communication. I also like the NetBeans Platform's branding support. Almost anything you can do with wizards and creators in NetBeans IDE. In short, I use the NetBeans Platform because it provides many tools to get started developing faster. There's the possibility to create nice looking applications without worrying about menus, docking, logging, and persistence.

Conclusion

I plan to make the tool open source but still it is just a very basic tool. I'd rather think about it as a first draft at the moment. :) When I get some more opinions about it, I'll decide to continue working on it or in which direction it should be developed.
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