mardi déc. 19, 2006

Roman, are you a Microsoft bigot? :)


No Microsoft really this year at JavaPolis, except for a small booth and some T-shirts:



Yes, this is NetBeans' Hall-of-Fame evangelist Roman Strobl, but before you think hell froze over, listen to the Port 25 podcast, it's pretty good.

mardi août 29, 2006

Is JavaPolis 2006 on your radar?


This time of the year is JavaPolis (the European Java conference in December in Antwerp) advertisement time.

The folks at the BeJUG seem to have way too much fun coming up with these banners. They have gone from coffee in 2004, to spoons in 2005, and to this in 2006.

Will this one be also banned from TSS?


lundi janv. 02, 2006

Romain was only 13 when I was writing java.math...


The best part of any such conference as JavaPolis has to be the networking (not the WiFi, the human one). On day 0 (Sunday), I met with Romain GUY (some might call him Romain GUI), Tor Norbye from the Creator team (and of JavaPosse fame), Ludo from NetBeans/Sun App Server, Judith from NetBeans and Richard Bair from SwingLabs. The diner brought some interesting discussion on the future of Sun tools. Some though decisions need to be made.

On Monday, I had a chat with Jean-François Denise (JMX NetBeans Plugin) quite happy that Apple finally released a 5.0 VM (5.0 makes things much simpler for JMX). I met the "Derby people" (Fernanda and Andreas from Norway), working hard on what seems like very well received Apache product and Sun announcements and demos. I also reconnected with Vincent Bellet (where's your blog Vincent??) from ZValley, a small but effective company focusing on Desktop Java with their WingZ product. I met for the first time with JBoss' Julien Viet, Milos Kleint (MevenIDE), as well as John Crupi for a late drink around SOA politics (a good speaker has to be a good blogger, so John you need to blog more often). I also had many discussions with Vincent Brabant, the French-speaking NetBeans board member. He showed me a nice NetBeans module integrating content from the Developpez.com web site (FAQ, Tutorials, forums, blogs, etc.) right from the IDE.

On Tuesday, I had diner with Jeff Jackson (VP of Java Developer Platforms Group -AT- Sun), Linda DeMichiel (EJB 3 co-spec lead), Ron Ten-Hove (JBI spec lead), Charles Beckham (soa@sun.com), Roger Kitain (JSF 1.2 spec lead), David Delabassee and Rudy Van Hoe. With all those spec leads, the most interesting part of the conversation was listening to what the keynote on the next day could have been if only Sun Corporate had allowed the speaker to remain on the JavaPolis "spoons" theme ;-)

Eamonn McManus the other JMX guy was there and seemed to have less problems connecting his Linux laptop this time around. I also reconnected with Mobile expert and former Sun evangelist Srikanth Raju now at Nokia. In a quick chat, Geert Bevin explained that he really liked CDDL and that he maintained a dual license (LGPL) only to be able to have GPL implementations using RIFE (this stands true for the NetBeans Platform I believe). It was also the first time I listened to Elliotte Rusty Harold and David Geary. Both are excellent speakers I must say. Both use a Mac, but Elliotte has an HTML presentation (not even an S5-powered I guess) while David has a fancy Keynote presentation with many useful animations (I don't usually like animations).

Finally, I had a quick chat with Josh Bloch, mainly to discuss the second version of Effective Java (sorry Don Box, no Effective C# for now it seems). Josh made this interesting comment when we came to talk about Romain Guy (we were looking at his Swing/JOGL-powered application running on the big screen) - "I feel old, Romain was 13 when I was writing java.math..."

mardi déc. 27, 2005

GlassFish @ JavaPolis, and in the Aquarium



GlassFish has enjoyed a pretty nice coverage at the last JavaPolis conference (actually more than what was planned). It only had one dedicated session by Inderjeet Singh, but EJB 3, NetBeans and Java Studio sessions, Apache Derby database, AJAX, JSF 1.2 and even Rod Johnson's Spring talks mentioned Sun's Open Source Java EE 5 Application Server. We also had a good number of people coming to the booth for questions and demos. I couldn't attend the Dali talk (Oracle EJB 3 support in Eclipse), but here's another place where GlassFish could be mentioned (see this). I guess the message that the "Reference Implementation" is no longer some proof of concept piece of software (this changed years ago...), but rather a production-quality application server has come across nicely.

GlassFish is almost feature-complete. It has EJB 3 persistence support (via Oracle's TopLink Essentials), EJB 3 POJO support with web-tier dependency injection (something most others don't have yet). But GlassFish is not just another Open Source java application server, it also provides differentiators such as the nio-based Grizzly HTTP listener framework, the web services monitoring support, AJAX demos and blueprints, modular load-on-demand architecture, and more. You can start using GlassFish today and even get the tools productivity with that.

If you want to know more about GlassFish, the Aquarium (a group blog, a new feature in Roller 2.0) is a very good place to keep an eye on. If you have a screencast on using GlassFish (such as this one) or a technical article on how to integrate GlassFish with your favorite framework or technology (Spring, Hibernate, Tapestry, AspectJ, Struts/WebWork, JDO, iBatis, etc), Eduardo has a little something for you... Make sure you also file bugs and RFEs (need to be logged-in), they are treated as more important than the ones filed by the GlassFish team.

Pretty fascinating to watch a community grow before your eyes.

mardi nov. 22, 2005

Java EE 5 getting closer


Don't feel like reading the Java EE 5 Proposed Final Draft or the GlassFish documentation drafts (9 detailled guides)?

Come to JavaPolis in December and listen to Ludo, and win an Ultra 20.

jeudi nov. 17, 2005

Anvers, c'est fini!



Un des tous premiers blog que j'ai lu (sans même utiliser un syndicateur comme Bloglines), c'est celui de James Gosling (le papa de Java) qui relatait son voyage Paris-Prague (ou NetBeans est développé) en 2003. C'est, à ce jour, probablement encore un des plus drôle et des mieux écrit que j'ai lu (en anglais).

La conférence Européene JavaPolis se teint le mois prochaine du lundi 12 au vendredi 16 décembre 2005 à Anvers. Ce sera mon troisième passage dans cette ville.

En septembre 2003, Nathalie et moi sommes invités au mariage de Fanny, mon binôme sur mon projet de fin d'études (un simulateur de billard français en OpenGL/Motif/C sous OpenVMS (!) sur la base de la Théorie mathématique des effets du jeu de billard de Coriolis (1835), tout un programme, mais je là m'égare).  Nous nous apprêtons donc à faire un peu de route pour rejoindre Anvers en Belgique où se déroule le mariage. Jusque là Anvers pour moi se réduisait (image forgée quand j'avais une dizaine d'années) à la ville du tournoi de tennis ou le vainqueur repartait avec une raquette en diamants... Ca allait devenir tout autre chose en l'espace d'un week-end.

Ne connaissant que peu de monde présent au mariage, Nathalie et moi avons décidé de partir de Paris dès le vendredi pour participer à un dîner organisé par les futurs mariés, histoire de faire connaissance avec les familles et les amis. En fait, j'avais même pris mon vendredi après-midi pour décoller à 16h00 de Paris persuadés d'anticiper tous les problèmes de départ en week-end. Deux heures plus tard, on passait l'aéroport de Roissy. Heureusement, j'avais investi peu de temps avant dans un GPS pour Palm (première génération, pas très précis, besoin de reprogrammer tous les 100km pour cause de plantage, ...) et donc le temps perdu serait "rattrapé" à ne pas tourner en rond aux intersections d'autoroutes belges et surtout dans Anvers. On se remonte le moral comme on peut... Enfin, juste le temps de réaliser que mon costume, ma chemise, ma cravate étaient restés accrochés sur ma porte de placard. Hors de question de faire demi-tour. C'est pas grave, on a le samedi pour faire des courses et puis de toute façon, il me fallait un nouveau costume (faudra juste trouver un magasin qui fait les retouches sur le champ).

Quelques plantages de mon soft GPS, 300 kilomètres et 2 heures et demie plus tard, voici Anvers ou Antwerp pour les locaux. Arrivée à l'hôtel Ibis au centre de la ville. La réservation faite sur Internet est bien réelle et on pose nos valises plutôt contents d'être arrivés. Ah, au fait, on est garé un peu loin, mais comme nous le suggère gentiment la demoiselle à l'accueil, il suffit d'attendre 22h, la fin du spectacle qui se tient dans le bâtiment à coté et on pourra se garer juste devant l'entrée de l'hôtel. Départ donc pour le restaurant avec un plan un peu approximatif, mais ca devrait pas être loin ni compliqué à trouver. Une demi-heure de marche plus tard, je comprends que l'échelle de la carte n'est pas celle que je pensais et 29 minutes plus tard de chemin inverse, nous voici au restaurant. Restaurant plein à craquer, plus une place de libre. Personne n'avait confirmé, tout le monde est venu! On attend un peu, on négocie pour rajouter deux chaises en bout de table avec le patron très soucieux de la réputation de sa maison et on finit par nous retrouver à coté des futurs mariés pour une soirée finalement très sympa (pour ceux qui sont arrivés encore plus tard, c'était dans le restaurant à coté). Ils nous parlent de la cathédrale (il y en a deux à Anvers) ou la cérémonie se tient le lendemain. On rentre vers 23h00 se coucher après avoir déplacé la voiture (merci mademoiselle!).

Samedi matin, 10h on est debout avec un costume à acheter avant la cérémonie de 15h00. Le problème c'est qu'à peine sorti de la chambre, la fenêtre  sur l'avant de l'hôtel donne une vue plongeante sur un énorme marché... La voiture n'était bien sûr plus là. Oui, il y avait un panneau, mais bon, le néerlandais et moi... Bref, me voilà à l'accueil de l'hôtel en train de péter un câble et surtout de demander ou se trouve le poste de police et ma voiture. "C'est très simple à trouver et c'est seulement dix minutes à pied". Ils ont l'air d'avoir l'habitude de montrer le chemin... Arrivé au poste de police, l'officier semble mort de rire ("encore un") et préfère qu'on parle anglais (lui parler français, ca semblait être comme parler russe à mes collègues tchèques...). Bref, voiture en fourrière en banlieue et amende de 96 euros. Merci.

Le costume, on le trouve en une demi-heure (retouches promises en 2 heures). Après trente minutes d'attente inutile à la station de bus qui doit m'emmener à la fourrière, on décide de se poser pour manger un morceau avant de récupérer le costume et d'aller à la cérémonie. On ira récupérer la voiture avant la réception du soir. Moules-Frites et Duwel Duvel pour faire passer les émotions. Et hop de nouveau le flash: où est l'église? Ben, sur le carton d'invitation. Et le carton? Ben, dans la voiture! Impossible de faire l'aller-retour, donc nous voilà, une fois le costume récupéré, en train de jouer à la chasse au trésor à demander aux gens dans la rue ou est la cathédrale la plus proche (attention, il y en a deux!). On arrive avec dix minutes de retard à la cérémonie.

La cérémonie terminée, une nouvelle demi-heure d'attente à l'arrêt de bus et nous voilà partis pour une visite guidée d'une heure de la banlieue d'Anvers endimanchés. Chauffeur très sympa, connaît bien la station de la fourrière (un copain du flic probablement). 96 euros plus tard nous voilà prêts à repasser à l'hôtel avant d'aller à la réception qui a lieu sur les docks. Endroit très sympa (un peu difficile à trouver sans GPS), il fait beau et on est tous là pour faire la fête. Cool. Une heure du mat, je suis crevé, on lève le camp et on ramène du monde qui dormait dans le même hôtel. Arrivé à la voiture, il manque une serrure, un GPS, un lecteur de CD. Et merde!

Dimanche matin, 10h commissariat d'Anvers, la permanence est toujours assurée par mon ami (il doit faire les week-ends) pour une déclaration de vol. Echange tout aussi sympathique. Départ à 11h sans GPS et retour à Paris après un arrêt chez des amis à Lille avec une idée en tête: Anvers, c'est fini.

Fin 2004, David, mon collègue de Sun en Belgique me parle de JavaPolis, cette conférence ou Marc Fleury se déguise en Zorro. Après tout c'est aussi un occasion de se refaire une idée sur la ville, et puis mon pote officier de police travaille le week-end, peu de chance de le croiser... J'ai donc assisté avec plaisir à JavaPolis 2004 (dormi dans le même hôtel et mangé dans le même endroit sur les docks, merci David!). Rendez-vous donc à nouveau à Anvers en décembre pour parler Java, J2EE, JSF, EJB, GlassFish, NetBeans, outils de développement, etc... et boire des Duwel Duvel avec mon ami Romain qui prend la voiture (good luck! ;-).

Depuis, j'ai un nouveau palm et un nouveau GPS (pas beaucoup mieux).

dimanche déc. 26, 2004

JavaPolis trip report (well kinda)


So, JavaPolis lived up to what I was hoping for (expect for the Geronimo talk that I now realized was canceled by reading this).

Most packed sessions I attended: Hibernate, JMX (see Éamonn's blog). The following is basically a few notes I took during some of the sessions I attended (I don't believe I'll have to courage to write about all of them). Note that all JavaPolis slides are now online.

Tiger (JDK 5.0)
Joshua Bloch/Neal Gafter (now at Google)
Fun to see Josh and Neal presenting Tiger from a Mac... no demo obviously (so much for the "in action" part of the presentation).
I had attended very similar presentations (or seen slides) but found the frequency table to be a very nice example combining many different new language features. I also learned that the compiler generates different code for arrays and for collections in the new for loop (not the case with C# where it is recommended to not use foreach with arrays).
While the new for loop syntax seems to please everyone, it cannot be used for
- removing elements as you traverse a collection
- modifying the current slot in an array or list
New keywords break many things in IDEs (assert in 1.4) and may require changing variable names.
Annotations do not really impact J2SE developers today, but DBC (Design By Contract), AOP, Testing and others are right around the corner.
...and obviously there's the upcoming J2EE 5.0 which will heavily leverage annotations (EJB 3.0, JDBC 4.0, etc...).

Spring
Juergen Hoeller / Rod Johnson (Interface 21)
Rod did the introduction and talked a lot about Struts being very nice but not covering all application needs (same with data frameworks).
"Spring does not compete with J2EE, only with EJB (and even more with in-house frameworks)". Cannot reuse code written for EJBs. EJB is described as an example to an "invasive" framework). "The Entity Bean part of the specification is  very invasive, each new feature break to code" (that's Rod talking). "As usual, EJB does things in a clumsy, inflexible, way" (still Rod talking...). Rod never mentioned EJB 3.0 which reuse lost of good ideas (POJOs, IoC, etc...) that day. In his other (shorter) talk, his message was "EJB 3.0" will not be around before another two years.

The rest of the talk by Juergen was very factual with no marketing and no EJB bashing...

EJB 3.0
Linda DeMichiel (Spec Lead, Sun)
Before Linda started talking to a crowded room (although not as much as for Gavin's Hibernate talk), the facilitator asked how many people were using J2EE (everyone raised his hand) and how many were using EJB today (3/4 kept their hand raised). Interesting to see how common wisdom can be wrong... (note I'm not saying they all love EJBs)

So, if you haven't already read about EJB 3.0, it's all about simplification for the developer, big use of annotations, and a new persistence model for POJO (Plain Old Java Objects). Linda seems very happy with the way EJB 3.0 is moving forward and the expert group seems to get along very well.

To all the people I talked to after Linda's talk, it really felt like a slam dunk (finally!). The only withstanding question was availability of the spec and the technology. It's amazing to see how this third iteration changes the way people look at J2EE and EJB in particular. While Rod Johnson's first book was a master piece, I feel his attempt at ignoring EJB 3.0 is not the right strategy.

Hibernate 3
Gavin King (JBoss)
(probably more people than for the keynote): in a year the project has gone from part-time Gavin and the community to 4 full-time engineers and the community. Obviously Hibernate 3.0 will serve as the EJB 3.0 Entity Manager (Gavin is on the expert group) in the JBoss product. Eclipse tooling (done by Max Andersen), Gavin claims that this is a preferable solution to having a separate standalone workbench. Hibernate v3 may be the last version (sort of joke to explain J2EE integration I guess). Very interesting call for unification of Web and EJB containers/technologies. Gavin had several slides up on JSF & EJB needing to merge with the will to have EJB methods be event handlers for JSF components or provide the EJB container with access to the web context. Another interesting evolution would be making the domain model available to front-end technologies.

TestNG
Cédric Beust (Google)
As always (other presentations, blogs or mailing lists), Cédric spends a fair amount of time explaining the problem he's trying to solve: building a better JUnit which has flaws which have an impact on the code you write (yes, not a good thing). TestNG uses annotations of javadoc comments to achieve a technically better unit framework. As Tim Bray points out, most people have worked around the JUnit limitations and tools support is already ubiquitous. So let me whish Cédric to be successful with this challenge as I'd like Sun to be successful with NetBeans!


Marc Fleury (JBoss)
Marc seemed upset to be scheduled in the Business track (I'm not saying this because he didn't dress as Zorro or Joker). He rushed through the business slides (which I though were an interesting example of Professional Open Source) to get down to why he loves JDK 5.0 annotations in EJB development. By the time he was done, I'm sure he had lost every manager in the room...


On the networking side...
Fun seeing Peter Zadrozdny, now a VP at Oracle pitching a nice "JSF community" story (in front of Craig MacClanahan). I met Peter when he was starting WebLogic France (just before BEA acquired them). Good luck on your new job Peter !

For a while, I though IBM's was not around. They had a little booth and almost no presence.Makes me think they really operate in their world with their customers.

Craig MacClanahan was brilliant as always in his 3-hour (which became 4-hour) session on Java Server Faces (in action!) with a great tour of the technology, demonstrations and a nice Q&A session. Since it was a technical session and not a sales pitch, Craig was almost afraid to show Java Studio Creator. He shouldn't. It's a great tool and something that I would recommend anyone willing to start with JSF as it is really THE technology Creator is built upon.

I had not seen Vincent Massol for years and did pretty good (JUnit, Maven, Offshoring) since that time!

I also finally met with Vincent Brabant, an active NetBeans community member.

And of course, I had all my Techno Celeb diners...

jeudi déc. 23, 2004

Antwerp Diners

In a MaryMary style, let me tell you about my Techno Celeb diners last week in Antwerp (sorry no pictures, you'll just have to trust me).
\* Monday: Linda DeMichiel (EJB 3.0) and Craig McClanahan (Struts, JSF). Web and EJB containers unite!
\* Tuesday: Tim Bray (XML, Atom), Mark Hapner (J2EE, JBI) and Hans Muller (Swing, JDNC). Read about it here.
\* Wednesday: Susan Landau (Security, DRM), Jon Bostrom (Nokia Java Guy) and Greg Bollella (Real-Time Java).
\* Thursday: BabelFish, Otaku, ThinkTank, and Bistro! All fluent in French but speaking English all diner long (a bit sad... ).

Lots of great people! This concentration of neurons almost had me feel smarter for a little while...

mardi déc. 21, 2004

Microsoft @ JavaPolis


So Microsoft was a sponsor at JavaPolis and before you even read the rest of this entry let me tell you it was a non-event.

The Microsoft presentation was not ground breaking, both content and speaker. Microsoft has plenty of excellent speakers, Alain is just not among the best ones (sorry, I didn't find him entertaining as advertised). His presentation was basically two fold:

1/ After telling the crowd he was disappointed with the attendance (it wasn't that bad), Alain went on to a "You know, J2EE and .Net are not that different..." pitch forgetting things like UML vs. DSL and claiming "Everything is object-oriented at Microsoft". One of the first slides mentioned Tim Gray's keynote earlier that day (not a typo, Alain pronounced it twice)! Come on, Alain, meet Tim Bray. Ever heard of XML? Maybe that didn't put me in a positive mode for the rest of the presentation....

2/ More technical stuff on how to integrate the two technologies. I was expecting something focused on Web Services integration (WS-I Basic Profile and .NET/JWSDP interop), but instead it started off with big and little endian issues (doh!), and didn't touch on CORBA-based integration (using for instance this or this).

Since all the presentation content was based on a book by Simon Guest, maybe the speaker had nothing to do with the presentation quality. Maybe the book is simply a little out-dated (summer 2003).


samedi déc. 18, 2004

JavaPolis & JavaLobby


The conference is now over and the content was great indeed. I was doing booth duty and attending interesting sessions. On the "booth" side, there was a lot to say on our development tools - NetBeans 4.0 (which just came out), Java Studio Enterprise (which just came out also), and Java Studio Creator (which will have an update real soon).

Among the people I talked to were Rick Ross and Matt Schmidt from JavaLobby.
We actually spent a fair amount of time talking about Sun tools and in particular demonstrated the Collaboration feature of Sun Java Studio Enterprise (a developer-oriented instant messaging built right in the tool) as well as the RAD ans WYSIWYG capabilities of Sun Java Studio Creator (Matt and Rick had not seen it before in detail). I think they liked both pretty much. Let's see if they mention Sun tools in their next newsletter. I was pretty confident this would happen until Greg Bollella showed them his Real Time Java "inverted pendulum (viagra) demo". Hard to beat that.

If you haven't already seen it, here's the new NetBeans 4.0 advertisement....

More on the "interesting sessions" soon.

mardi nov. 02, 2004

JavaPolis


Alright, I've made up my mind (actually my manager's), I'm off the JavaPolis in December (13th to 17th) in Antwerpen (Anvers for the French), Belgium.

Talk about a funny conference name, wait untill you see their marketing campaign -->

Great content, great speakers. Here's my draft agenda so far :
- Spring in Action
- JSF in action (by Craig himself)
- Eclipse in Action (need to know the "competition")
- JDK 5.0 in Action (will be fun to see Joshua again)
- BPEL in action (if not a repeat of Oracle's JavaONE session)
- Tim Bray's keynote (great speaker, great content)
- Groovy (maybe I'll finally get enough time to look at it)
- JDNC - JDesktop Network Components (same as above, need to dive into this)
- EJB 3.0 and JDO 2.0 (see how the two align and how the POJO effort is moving along)
- Introducing TestNG (and say hello to Cedric)
- Maven (another Frenchman, long time no see)
- Apache Geronimo (I need an update)
- Tapestry (how it relates/competes to JSF)
- Interop. between .Net and J2EE by Microsoft (yes, Microsoft is a sponsor and the speaker is said to be entertaining!). Update: Alain has a blog entry here
- JBoss' Professional Open Source with J2EE (can't miss marcf!)
- The JavaPolis Movie
- Belgian beer (sorry no link, David D. will help out I'm sure)

See you there!

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