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Preface - Pg. xvii

preface Gosh, batch processes are hard to write--especially when using a general language like Java. In spite of this, they're exciting to write, when you consider the large amount of data they process. Batch jobs run every night, making it easy for millions of people to do things like banking, online shopping, querying billing information, and so on. This ought to turn any (geeky) developer on. That was the case with Thierry, who was the first to work on the proposal for a Spring Batch book with Manning. Arnaud joined soon afterwards. The funny thing is that we were still working on Manning's Spring Dynamic Modules in Action book at the time. Writ- ing a book is a challenge, but you could consider writing two books at the same time a sign of madness. Gary joined after we wrote a couple of chapters. Although Gary didn't write any of the original material, he handled what is undoubtedly the more difficult task: editing and sometimes rewriting the source material of three French authors. He always put us back on the right track with the benefit of hindsight (which isn't an out- standing quality of hectic technical authors). Gary is French, but don't worry, he's also American and has been living in the U.S. for decades. The book doesn't contain any trace of our French accents! Olivier was the last to join the team. Fourteen chapters is a lot and another pair of hands was welcome. We did our best to make this book as comprehensive and accessible as possible. We hope you'll benefit from our experience with Spring Batch and that our book will help you write fast, robust, and reliable batch jobs with this framework. xvii