ZenJava is the web site for Daniel Zwolenski (aka zonski), a Java Architect/Developer currently living and working in Melbourne, Australia

Zen Java is my little virtual home on the web. It’s not a company and it doesn’t have any products to sell. It’s just a space where I share stories about my adventures in Java and give a little code back to the community. Hopefully something in here will be useful for you.

I’m a Software Architect based in Melbourne, Australia with a passion for developing user-friendly, graphical applications in Java. I currently work for Our Community, a social enterprise providing support services to the community sector. Recently I led the development of the new Funding Centre, a search engine and help centre for community groups seeking funding. I have also worked on Smarty Grants, a system that assists philanthropic organisations to manage their grant and charitable giving programs.

I’ve worked on a lot of different things in my career. As an independent contractor I’ve continually sought out the most interesting and challenging projects. Some of my favourites include:

  • Coinland for the Commonwealth Bank: an online, multi-user virtual world where kids learn about saving (and spending). This has a Flash front-end with a Java backend. I was the Architect and Technical lead for the development of this.
  • SMART for the NSW Education Department: a GWT application that teachers use to report on and graph students test results for NAPLAN, finding trends so they can adjust their teaching strategies. I was the Lead Developer on this project and was responsible for the project architecture and technical leadership.
  • Trade Events Online for Tourism Australia: a web and Swing based system that provided event management systems for the Australian Tourism Exchange, the largest of its kind in the Southern Hemisphere. I was a Lead Developer with a great team. We had lots of fun building graphical floorplan tools and working with scheduling algorithms to ensure everyone got to see who they wanted.

As well as being a computer nerd, I’m also a closet environmentalists. I’ve spent several stints between my IT contracts volunteering and working on conservation projects around the world. I’ve blogged about a few of my adventures on the way:

I fully support and recommend all the projects in these blogs, but the Andean Bear Project in Ecuador has a special place in my heart. If you’re ever looking for something to do in South America, look them up!

I was also the Assistant Producer for a TV show called Extinction Sucks, where I cameo in one episode in a gorilla outfit. I generally leave that one off my CV when applying for jobs though.