Last week was a lot of fun;-) JavaOne time. But at the end of it, I was very tired.
Everything started with the NetBeans Day on Monday. Or better with the registration to it. Seeing all those people standing in line to listen to what’s new and coming in NB was quite a sight. I talked to a couple of people while standing in line about what tools they were using. Most of the people I talked to there where using more than one editor/IDE. Some little missing features can sometimes make the live harder than it should be. I pointed a couple to Sandip’s blog to show them that there is more out there and how easy it is to write your own little additional modules.
The presentations were good, but the conference rooms in the hotel could not hold all the people. I was especially interested in Sandip’s presentation of the future Creator pack. That went well and I think a lot of people liked the idea that we are finally combining the two.
Tuesday, the AXAJ and Semplice showings in the keynotes were well recieved. I don’t think too many people understood really what Tor was showing there. I think a couple got it later in the week at the Semplice coming out session.
One session was called “Twelve Reasons to Use Creator”. Charles Ditzel wrote about it. I know a lot about Creator but I wanted to see what questions and concerns would come up there. Overall, I think the audience did learn a lot about different corners of Creator. For me the best part was when Octavian tried to squeeze into a small NetBeans shell (ahm t-shirt;-). I tried to take some pictures but those little digital cameras don’t work so well at a distance:-(
I talked to a lot of people during my shift at the Creator booth in the Pavillion. Some things that came up again where Tomcat and JBoss, Java EE 5 support (and the unfortunate lack of Java SE 5 support in the current Creator), JDBC driver issues, and portlets/portal questions. Overall I somehow seem to see an increase in interest in the portlet area. At J1, at the Creator forum and I even get emails asking about deploying our portlets to different portals. So I used the pavillion to talk to the JBoss Portal and the LifeRay people. In the end I was successful to deploy our portlets to both of them;-)
Later in the evening I went to the packed JavaPosse BOF. The room in the Argent hotel could hardly hold all the people. Ofcourse I know all those four guys and it was a fun evening. Listen to episode #55 to get an impression;-) But it ended (officially) at 23:20 and I had to get home.
On Wednesday the most interesting talk for me was probably the Groovy talk. I come from a Unix background and did some scripting all along. I find that combination of Java and a scripting language good. I hope I can try to play with that a bit more in the near future.
Thursday started with the IBM keynote. I did not know what to expect but was surprised by the Eclipse and it’s community talk. I found the demo of the tight integration of the IDE with the overall process very interesting. There was an old joke in the Emacs world: “When do you know that an editor matures? – When it can send email.” I guess that process integration is a step into the same direction, doing more in the same environment.
Next was the Semplice talk. Unfortunately it was moved from the afternoon to the moring. So I don’t know how many people did not make it. But the people who made it found it very interesting. Unfortunately the talk now collided with another talk “Dynamic Typed Languages and the JVM” which I would have also liked to attend:-(
In the evening, the famous J1 Bash with James Gosling’s t-shirt throwing-machine contest. Some time to relax a bit and have fun.
Later I went to two NetBeans BOF’s. In the first one Geertjan and Petr showed how easy it is to extend or customize NB with a new Web Framework. The second one was about the NB collaboration modules with a twist. The transport layer was JXTA;-) At that BOF one guy came up and talked about how he had tried to get the NB collaboration modules working in Creator. He was not completely happy. I tried that as well way back when. I got most of it to work but then too much other stuff came in between and that never went anywhere.
And it was again 23:20 and time to get home.
Friday started with the fun Sun keynote. I did not ride my bicycle that week:-( I was simply too tired and BART has restrictions on which trains you can bring your bike, so it did not play out. But quite some people did ride;-) And one guy won the Lance Armstrong jersey;-)
James Gosling had the final of the RT Slot Car Race on stage. That race track was always surrounded by a lot of people at the pavillion. And I’ve seen quite a few people spending a lot of time there trying to get into that final. Four kids from Germany made it and ended up taking second place;-)
Two interesting talks were the NB API development talk and a session on JSF in portlets.
Overall I trink it was a very good conference. I don’t have any numbers but it looked more buzzing than the last couple of years. One thing, I have to think about, is how to better handle late BOF’s, early keynotes and a 1.5 hour commute time.
And now I need some time to play with my new toy;-) The Jasper S20 phone. So far, it works pretty well as normal cell phone but I got it to play with the devlopment for it;-)
PS: I had big problems today. For whatever reason, my FireFox timed out all the time when I tried to write this post:-(