Arriving in Sydney for Sun Tech Days -- and what a city!

Sydney this time of year feels like two seasons, spring and fall, converging. (Or  is this just because it's my first time in the southern hemisphere?... It's warm and balmy at the same time some foliage is turning an electrifying yellow. The harbor is as breathtaking as all the pictures I've seen. Gosh, is this the most beautiful city I've ever laid my eyes on? Could be!

I arrived in Sydney, some 19 hours ahead of San Francisco time – who says tomorrow never comes? The time just flew by! I’m still trying to figure out what happened to all those missing hours. (My days as a stand-up comedian come back to haunt me -- or you.) Luckily, my body thinks Sydney is 5 hours behind San Francisco, instead of 19 hours ahead, so it’s less confused than I am. 
This is my first Tech Days ever and my first any-kind-of-day “down under” in Sydney, Australia (I can’t escape the illusory sense that I’ve traveled downward). After seeing pictures of the Sydney harbor for years, I’m not far from it. Nothing disorients like experiencing reality you’d only previously imagined.

I’m scheduled to meet Java Champion, Michael Cannon-Brookes, mid-week, who, along with Scott Farquhar, set up their Java EE IT company, Atlassian in 2002 when they were fresh out of college. By 2006, they were turning over $15 million a year at the ripe old ages of 26 and 27 and had won the Ernst and Young Entrepreneur of the Year award. Cannon-Brookes is the most famous Java developer in Australia.

Atlassian is a Java EE software development and professional services company based in Sydney, with more than 10,00 customers from 98 countries who collaborate and develop using their software. Clients include Reserve Bank, NASA, Telstra, and even Microsoft. Atlassian specializes in issue tracking and collaboration software. Their main products are JIRA, an issue tracking and project management system; Confluence, an enterprise wiki; Bamboo, a continuous integration system, and Crowd, a single sign-on identity management system.

I’m planning to interview Cannon-Brookes eventually for the Java Champions series on java.sun.com. I'm so fortunate to get to hobnob with this tech-savvy generation who are making such big contributions at such a young age.  

Cannon-Brookes is the Co-Author of ”Java Open Source Programming”, and a mover and shaker in open source.

On his blog, he lists the 5 “Atlassian Values”:

\* Open company. No bull\*\*.
\* Build with heart and balance.
\* Don't f\*\*\* the customer.
\* Play, as a team.
\* Be the change you seek.

(Forgive me the asterisks; they're mine – I consider this a family blog. :)   ) I can see why they’re successful. I wonder if their saucy style results more from being founded by young people, or being founded by Australians. Probably both.

Developers may have heard of JIRA, which, three years running has been recognized by the Jolt Awards for its excellence in helping users track and manage issues in their software development tasks.

Learn more about Sun Tech Days.

Janice J. Heiss

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