Eliminate Boilerplate Java code with Lombok

I’ve been writing a lot of boilerplate Java code, lately — getters, setters, hashCode, equals and toString. Actually, I’d use Eclipse to generate these methods. There were some minor annoyances though, like when I needed to add a new member variable and then I had to regenerate code to include it.

It wasn’t pretty, but I had made my peace with it. Until I got to a class that had a lot of fields and I needed a builder to construct it. For those unfamiliar with the builder design pattern, here’s a quick primer. In a nutshell, I wanted to be able to write code like this:

Unfortunately, Eclipse doesn’t generate these builder classes and I sure as hell wasn’t going to write them by hand. So, I did what all developers do and headed to StackOverflow and stumbled upon this thread that mentioned Project Lombok. Project Lombok generates boilerplate code for you based on annotations. All I needed to do was to write the Java class like this:

The Data annotation generates getters, setters, hashCode, equals, toString and the Builder annotation generates the builder class. That’s it! I just followed the instructions on the Project Lombok website and was able to use it in my project in 10 mins.

Siva Narayanan

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