Going back to do more certification.
I was going to go straight for the Sun Certified Java Systems Architect (or whatever it is). When I read the syllabus I realised that you may as well get the Business Components and Web Services certs on the way because you cover the ground anyway. So, now reading up on EJB’s and EJB/J2EE design patterns.
To get started there’s a very good J2EE tutorial on the sun website, I’ve been using this to get back into it quickly.
Also, if you download the 1.4 JDK (get everything) you’ll get an example J2EE server that this tutorial uses. You can get the tutorial and related code as well. I’ll let you find them yourself, dear reader. Just make sure you’ve got the bin directory of the J2EE server in your path so that their version of ant will work from the command line.
Register with the server side, if you do you can get free PDF’s of the first two books in my list below, plus a ruck of other things. Very good site. I still prefer paper though.
Mastering Enterprise Java Beans – Roman/Ambler/Jewell – Wiley
EJB Design Patterns – Marinescu – Wiley
Core J2EE Patterns – Alur/Crupi/Malks – Prentice Hall
Enterprise Java Beans – Monson-Haefel – O’Reilly
Java Enterprise in a Nutshell – Flanagan/Farley/Crawford/Magnusson – O’Reilly
Finally: Go here for a list of topics and a brief description of what they contain. Mikalai Zaikin has done a great service for the rest of us and should be thanked.