Last week I attended Java One, which proved to be both an entertaining and enlightening experience … who knew I would be excited to see “Duke” in person (for the uninitiated Duke is the Java Mascot).
During the Key note on Day 1, the key messages all centered around Java being everywhere, with a lot of focus on consumer electronics (yes Java coming to a TV near you). A lot of emphasis was placed on JavaFX being the way of the future .. with Larry Ellison anointing it the savior of all AJAX programmers. While AJAX is not necessarily simple, after attending a few JavaFX sessions, I’ll have to say “I don’ quite see it yet”. It offers some potential for creating UIs, but quite frankly still has some maturing to do, and given no one technology is standing still I’d say the jury is still out. That said as one application vendor put it to me, they can create Uis for mobile, desktops and the web using one language … so seems its back to the future .. Write once, run everywhere.
I attended the Script Bowl, which was a shoot out between a variety of scripting languages, with Language Guru’s demonstrating key features, and the winner being decided based upon crowd response (read that as cheers and applause):
- Jython: Stood out as a tried and tested language given its basis in Python, but got something of a muted response from the Java Developers
- Groovy – Proved to be the crowd favorite, its closeness and compatibility with Java , giving it the necessary boost with the audience
- Scala – Was a new one on me, but definitely was the runner up
- Clojure – I think this took every developer somewhere they did not want to go … back to LISP type programming
- Jruby – Did not get much love … think it suffered from the same hangup as Jython .. Just a tad to different from Java for the audience’s taste
On the cloud front, attended a lot of good sessions of leveraging Amazon EC2 and Google App Engine, but my standout favorite was a session by eHarmony on leveraging Hadoop on EC2 to do analytics, aptly titled “Matchmaking in the Cloud:Hadoop and EC2 at eHarmony“. It was a great use case for leveraging a public cloud infrastructure to augment an element of an internal business process. They showed how they shipped certain matching data out to EC2 to run MapReduce algorithms , and then brought the results back in. It provided an honest assessment of benefits, challenges, and decision points.
For pure entertainment I attended a BOF at 7:30pm (sessions go till 10:30pm did I mention this was my first Java One?) that focused on using Java to program Lego NXT MindStorm robots, always cool having little robots running around.
Was not all at fun and games .. Obviously had a number of customers to meet and prep for the IBM Keynote at Java One by my boss Craig Hayman, titled “Extreme Transaction Processing and Elasticity” Which I must say was the most technical keynote of the conference!
On the horizon I will be delivering a keynote titled “Convergence in the Cloud: How Cloud Computing and SOA Produce Real Change” at the SOA World Conference in NY on June 23rd … So if your in town come and check it out..