I'm sitting in the San Francisco airport (SFO) waiting for the plane to
Colorado. You can spot all the JavaOne attendees by their
backpacks and dazed looks. JavaOne 2006 is over for me as well.
very much enjoyed this year. I was actually quite relaxed
compared to most years. I usually go for lots of techno
bling-bling in the pavilion. This year I didn't. I
went home without ONE T-shirt! Can you imagine it?
turns out, I was wandering by a booth and the guy says, "Hey, you want
T-shirt?". Now for JavaOne veterans like myself, this is like hearing,
"Hey, you want this chunk of Gold?". I don't know
what it is about
us geeks and T-shirts and useless trinkets. But we go after
like the "Big 5" on an African safari. The part I love is
all the geeks display their trophies throughout the week.
for instance the Sun Developers Network (SDN) party. I didn't
make it because I was too busy attending very interesting BOFs
(performance evaluations are soon so this should look good). Anyway, I
was in a BOF when a group of people walk in with balloons twisted on
their head. One dude had a hat with a figure of a woman
bike in a bikini. I have many observations about that.
First, what the heck was the balloon twister thinking when he
that one? I was going to take a picture but a friend of mine
recently got in trouble for a blog picture so I didn't want to have the
same thing happen. Ok, so in walks this group of people with twisted
balloons with graphic depictions, on their heads and sit down in the
BOF like nothing's wrong. They obviously had a substance
blood running in their veins because one of them immediately fell
asleep in the chair. That's JavaOne. That's what
so unique. The true geek comes out in all the attendees and
everyone seems to thrive on the geekiness of the people around them.
I remember the JavaOne days of old. Some unsuspecting woman
had volunteered to do collateral (marketing speak for geek junk) duty
would walk onto the pavilion floor with a box marked "Hanes".
Some geek in the crowd would yell, "T-Shrits!" and thousands
wild-eyed Java developers would converge on the T-Shirt box.
this point, the collateral specialist would drop the box and run for
her life. Now we had what my friend Anthony Earl and I like
call a "T-Shirt Scrum". Ant is English and a former Rugby
so he relates well with the term. The Scrum was a free-for
for a $5 T-Shirt that had "Java" on it somewhere. On one
occasion, I worked my way to the middle, got a T-Shirt then did a
fullback maneuver out of the scrum. Ant had a big smile on
face when I emerged from the scrum as I had apparently hooked a geek on
my backpack and drug him out of the scrum with me. I'm really
that big, 5'6" about 170 lbs. This gives you an idea of the
adrenaline rush that used to be involved in getting a T-Shirt.
if you contrast that with the guy handing me a T-Shirt this year, it's
just not the same. Now many of the vendors require a form of a
scavenger hunt before you can claim your T-Shirt. If you do
duty, you can tell the geeks on the hunt because they'll walk up with a
stamped piece of paper and ask a question like, "What stamp do I get
here?". OK, so maybe I'm getting older and finally realizing
that I'll probably never where the 20 XXL T-shirts I have in my drawer
over the next year. I know my wife has been telling me that
years but you know how that is. My all-time favorite JavaOne
T-Shirt was from Segue software. On the back of the T-Shirt
picture of a Sumo wrestler leaning way far forward flying
the air in the middle of an alpine ski jump. It was so cool!
I wish I remembered the tagline because it was very good as
If anyone remembers this T-Shirt, please comment and help me
with the tagline. I wore that T-Shirt until it was almost
ring around my neck! Oh yeah! I can't leave out the JavaOne
mints. Why do so many vendors insist on giving out mints?
Here are some theories.
- Mints are cheap and everyone likes to carry them
- They are easy collateral to transport to JavaOne
- Us geeks have bad breath
I tend to believe theory 3 is the truth. Here's an idea.
Why don't the vendors just give us toothbrushes instead.
That way we'll see their company name every time we brush our
teeth. OK, so that assumes we brush our teeth. I
of us do.
Creator Open Sourced
That's right! We announced this JavaOne that we
open-sourcing Java Studio Creator. You can hear the official
announcement during the first
day's General Session.
Java Studio Creator
Delivering Features for the NetBeans IDE
This addresses the question, "Why do I have to install
and Creator if I want to create web services and do visual web
application development?". Sandip Chitale
did a demonstration at
NetBeans Day showing Creator drag-n-drop, visual development in the
NetBeans 5.5 Beta IDE. While you can't download this yet,
basically shown you the direction we're heading. We still
there will, however, be customers who don't want the 747 cockpit and
would prefer the simplified, focused view of Java Studio Creator as a
stand alone IDE.
Application on the NetBeans Platform is Way Easier Than it Used to Be
Even though I work in Sun Tools as the Java Studio Creator
Evangelist, I'm very honest with people about my view of Sun tools 3
years ago. I wouldn't touch them. I had tried
Java", Netbeans 3.5, and 3.6 and quite frankly, I wouldn't ever use
them. That's a very different story today. I really
as a developer in IDEs. I even used Borland's early text
IDEs for pascal and C. I used Symantec's Visual Cafe for a
time, IBM's Visual Age, and Borland's JBuilder for a long time.
use an IDE because I want ot to make my job easier. If it
do that, why use it. Not only has the NetBeans IDE become
usable and helpful, the NetBeans platform that it's built on has
recently become way easier to use. When I first started in
Creator engineering group almost 3 years ago, I had nothing
to say about NetBeans module development. I had to do it for
Web Service consumption feature. And unless you were a very
seasoned NetBeans developer, using the NetBeans platform for an
application was unthinkable. With NetBeans 5.0 the NetBeans
has finally nailed the module development. Now developing
for NetBeans is extremely easy. Geertjan Wielenga's
BOF opened my eyes about how easy it is now to use the NetBeans
platform for application development. Geertjan and Petr Pisl
created a Wicket IDE based on the NetBeans platform.
Visual Basic For The Java
Yes you heard correclty. Tor Norbye, John Kline
Creator engineers), and Herbert have been working on project Semplice
for about 9 months. This project allows a Visual
Basic 6 or
earlier VB programmer to write VB code that runs on the Java Platform.
They demonstrated importing the Visual Basic calculator
and running it on the Java Platform FASTER than it runs as a windows
.EXE. The coolest demo was showing a VB program running on
Herbert's new SavaJe
phone in the CDC VM.
Sun Portal Server 7
Making Big Steps
I talked with Paul Hinz, the Sun Portal Server
Manager and he showed me a preview of the upcoming release.
were showing this at the Pod and I know this is tooting Sun's horn, but
it was very cool. They've implemented an AJAX window where
portlets run that allow for asynchronous portlet content updating.
This means if the content in one portlet changes only that
portion of the screen changes instead of refreshing the entire screen
with a postback. Also, you can drag portlets around and
reposition them in the portal. Watch for this to be released
soon. I'm really happy Sun's making the portal product better.
Open Source Portal Project
Sun has started an open source portal
The first part of the project is a portlet repository where people can
find open source portlets. So please contribute all your
AJAX Is Here
Duh! If you're a developer like I am, you can appreciate how
times a technology is hyped then quickly dies when people realize what
it really means. AJAX stormed JavaOne 2005 by surprise but
the definitely the planned focus of this year's JavaOne. The
thing I learned about AJAX at this JavaOne is how many companies like
Google and ICESoft really figured out the best way to leverage AJAX
technology. They've employed a lost art called "Software
Engineering" and created cohesive frameworks that encapsulate the
Now developers can use AJAX technology without doing the
low-level garbage necessary to make AJAX sing.
Jini Moving to Apache
"Jini?", you ask. Why do I care about Jini? I first came to
in 2000 to work on the Jiro Technology team. Jiro was a
management framework (the buzzword of the era) built on Jini
Technology. This was a very very fun job. Jini is a
technology. Jini services and the concept of "resilient
is a very compelling service story. Jini service federations
existed way before the term "Service
was coined. After attending the BOF on Jini and JavaSpaces,
compelled to take a fresh look at Jini 2.0. At the BOF, they
mentioned that they are trying to get Jini to be taken on by the Apache
Foundation. The amazing thing about Jini is that the user
community has liked it so much that they've basically been keeping it
going for the past 3-4 years.
Hope to see you all at next year's JavaOne!