How would a "supplementary private method" help avoid raw types?

While Sweeper perfectly answered the question, I am adding a bit more context on the raw context warning, and what could have been the developer's intention there (disclaimer, I am not the one wrote that code, I am just speculating)

According to the doc,

A raw type is the name of a generic class or interface without any type arguments

So in the above code, ListIterator it is a raw type. And you are assigning ListIterator of list which is a wildcard type List<?>.

Now what might be the issue in the above code using raw types? When you use a raw type to directly invoke a generic method defined in the corresponding generic types, the compiler will throw a warning. It will show warning for unchecked invocation as you are bypassing the generic type check, and that can cause a runtime error for type-mismatch. In this case, the following is doing that:


Here arr[i] is the wildcard type created from List<?> but it is a raw ListIterator. So by design, compiler will show a warning. To get rid of that warning the developer suppressed that using:

@SuppressWarnings({"rawtypes", "unchecked"})

Now, a better workaround would be to have a private generic method to create a generic ListIterator and dump the array there. But the developer didn't seem to like that idea (although I think that would be cleaner).

There is a page in the Oracle Docs that explains what "captures a wildcard" means.

In the case of shuffle, you extract the "dump array" operation into a generic helper method:

private static <T> void dumpArray(Object[] arr, List<T> list) {
    ListIterator<T> it = list.listIterator();
    for (int i=0; i<arr.length; i++) {;

dumpArray(arr, list);

This works because as the docs said:

Thanks to the helper method, the compiler uses inference to determine that T is CAP#1, the capture variable, in the invocation.