Dear Java, Please Let Me Work

I had to read the content of a file for a ruby project. This is how I did it:

def read_file_content(filename)

Simple enough, right?

Then for some reason I thought about how I would have to the same in Java:

public String readFileContent(String filename) {
  try {
    BufferedReader reader = new BufferedReader(new FileReader(filename));
    StringBuilder buffer = new StringBuilder();
    String line = null;
    while ((line = reader.readLine()) != null) {
    return buffer.toString();
  } catch (IOException e) {
    return "";

Need I really explain why I prefer Ruby these days? Even if you remove the try/catch clause and rethrow the exception, that’s still a lot of code compared to a single line of ruby. I am also aware that it is possible to write the same Java code in a single line using Apache’s commons-io (IOUtils.toString(InputStream) – but still, why are the base Java libraries so verbose for file manipulation?

I still like Java, but I’m impress by the compactness of Ruby. It just works as it should. Sometimes working in Java it seems I’m just smashing the keyboard instead of getting actual work done.

2 thoughts on “Dear Java, Please Let Me Work”

  1. In Python, you also get a similar syntax :
    open(fileName).readlines() would return your entire’s file content, already split by lines, ready to be iterated over.

    Makes you wonder why Java makes it so hard.

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