Thursday Jan 28, 2016

New Java Champion Hendrik Ebbers

Welcome the new Java Champion Hendrik Ebbers

Hendrik Ebbers is Java Architect at Canoo Engineering AG and lives in Dortmund, Germany. His focus is UI technologies, Middleware and DevOps in addition to research and development. 

Hendrik Ebbers is the founder and leader of the Java User Group Dortmund and gives talks at user groups and international conferences such as JavaOne, Devoxx, JFokus JAX and more. He blogs about UI related topics at www.guigarage.com. He is also a writter for the Java Magazine and a co-creator of JavaFX Ref Card for DZone

Hendrik is one of the lead developers of DataFX that is used in several Java projects. This year Hendrik started the open source project Dolphin Platform. Here Hendrik is one of the lead developers and he is responsible for the JavaEE and Spring integration as well as the JavaFX client part. 

Hendriks JavaFX book "Mastering JavaFX 8 Controls" was released 2014 by Oracle press. Hendrik is JavaOne Rockstar and JSR expert group member. Follow him on Twitter @hendrikEbbers 

Learn more about the Java Champion program

Wednesday Jan 20, 2016

A Look Back on Java Champions of 2015

Once again, join us to celebrate the Java Champions of 2015. They are recognized leaders in the Java community for their technical achievements and community contributions. 2015 welcomed the Java Champions listed below: 
  • Rajmahendra Hegde, leader of JUG Hyderabad, and expert group member of three JSRs 
  • José Paumard, assistant professor at Paris 13 and co-funder of Devoxx France
  • Rafael Winterhalter, software consultant and JVM enthusiast
  • Daniel De Luca, worldwide manager of the Devoxx4Kids initiative
  • Lukas Eder, CEO of Data Geekery and main contributor of Java Object Oriented Querying
  • Vinicius Senger, co-founder of Globalcode and Java embedded enthusiast
  • David Blevins, co-founder of the OpenEJB (1999), Geronimo (2003), and TomEE (2011) projects
  • Josh Long, contributor to open-source Spring Boot, Spring Integration, Activiti, and Vaadin and more.
  • Mohamed Taman, chief of architects & software development manager at e-finance
  • Murat Yener, JUG leader in Turkey
  • Aslak Knutsen,  co-founder and lead of the Arquillian project
  • Martin Thompson,  consultant, trainer, and coach specializing in designing high-performance and low-latency systems
  • Tom Schindl, software developer on the Eclipse Platform and the JavaFX integration named e(fx)clipse
  • Peter Lawrey,  consultant and technical lead for OpenHFT
  • Sven Reimers, member of the NetBeans Dream Team, a contributor to OpenJFX and a systems engineer at Airbus
  • Enrique Zamudio, engineer on the Ceylon language team and a contributor of javaMexico community
  • Otávio Santana, JUG leader of JavaBahia and SouJava in Brazil and a developer in OpenJDK
  • Freddy Guime, JUG leader of Chicago Java Users Group and a co-author of Java 7 Recipes
  • Jacek Laskowski, consultant and trainer
Check out the new Java Champion website, for a list of champions and learn how to become one.  

Thursday Jan 07, 2016

New Java Champion Daniel De Luca

Congratulations to the new Java Champion: Daniel De Luca!

Daniel is the Worldwide manager of the Devoxx4Kids initiative and co-organizer of Devoxx4Kids events in Belgium. Passionate about Software Architecture, Java SE/EE and IT in general, Daniel loves to share his passion with children, showing them how they can become the wizards of tomorrow.

Devoxx4Kids has reached 6000 children in the last 3 years and organized more than 200 events around the world. The workshops are made publicly available on GitHub,  and have been translated into many languages like French, Spanish, German and Dutch

Daniel is also Steering Member of the Devoxx BE conference, and Steering Member of BeJUG. To learn more about Devoxx4kids visit www.devoxx4kids.org

Follow him on Twitter @danieldeluca

Java champions are an exclusive group of passionate Java technologists and community leaders who are community-nominated. Learn more about Java Champions

Thursday Dec 10, 2015

Certification Discount ends December 31

Get 20% off any Java certification exam until December 31! Don’t miss this great opportunity to get Java certified and show off your credentials. 

How to get started 

1. Find the Java exam that meets your skill level and experience.
2. Review exam preparation and topics.
3. Register at Pearson VUE. Use promotion code Java20 to receive the 20% discount.

This globally available offer is open until December 31, 2015. 


Tuesday Dec 08, 2015

Programming Contest: The Greeps are Coming!

Looking for a fun game to program or a way to teach Java programming and computational problem-solving? In this article, Michael Kölling, lead developer of Greenfoot, a programming environment that enables novices to create simulations and games, describes the Greeps contest. Whether you are running a coding club, helping out with programming in your kid's school, teaching your own son or daughter to write Java, or even wanting to learn Java yourself, this contest will make it fun.

The programming experience needed to participate in this contest is modest. However, while the task can be started easily using some basic ideas, it can be improved a lot by using an intelligent strategy. 

The appropriate age range for contestants is about 13 years upwards. It works equally well with older age groups. And even if you are an experienced programmer, you might have some fun attempting this task

To learn more details about the contest and the stars of the contest--alien creatures called Greeps--read the article

Thursday Nov 19, 2015

New Java Champion Lukas Eder

Congratulations to the new Java Champion: Lukas Eder! 

Lukas is the CEO of Data Geekery, a service offering open source products and APIs based on Java Object Oriented Querying (jOOQ). He has been the main contributor of the open source jOOQ project for many years. Lukas is also a consultant and a trainer on SQL and Java 8. He writes about topics related to jOOQ, SQL and Java on the blog http://blog.jooq.org

Lukas is a member of the board of the Java User Group Switzerland (JUG.ch), where he brings popular speakers to conferences in Zurich, Bern, Lucerne, and Basel. He is involved with the program committee of Voxxed Zurich and other Java conferences. Lukas has been  a speaker at many Java conferences such as Geekout, Geecon, and Devoxx for many years. Follow him at @lukaseder 

Monday Nov 02, 2015

Gosling is admiral of a fleet of robotic marine drones

By Roger Smith

Father of Java is now Liquid Robotics' chief software architect

I learned James Gosling, the creator of the Java language, is now the admiral of a fleet of water-borne drones from Mike Duigou last Thursday at the Java Hub in the JavaOne Exhibit hall. Gosling is the chief software architect for Sunnyvale-based Liquid Robotics, a 8-year-old company that uses self-propelled 7-foot-long marine robotic drones that look like surfboards to collect and transmit oceanic data for a variety of uses. Duigou told me that he was brought aboard by Gosling as Senior Software Engineer when he joined the company in 2011.

Called Wave Gliders, the drone are powered by wave energy, with the constant up-and-down motion providing energy that pulls the robots through the ocean. Duigou gave me a hand-on tour of the USS Gosling, a test Wave Glider on display in the Hub. He explained the Wave Glider is made of two parts: the surfboard-sized float that stays on the surface; and the sub that has wings and hangs 3-9 meters below the float on an umbilical tether. Because of the separation, the float experiences more wave motion than the sub. This difference allows wave energy to be harvested to for propulsion.


Exploded view of Wave Glider marine drone (source: Liquid Rocket)

The Wave Glider is equipped with several computers for navigation and payload control, satellite communication systems, and ocean sensors that do things like measure weather, sea conditions, water quality and chemistry, animal life and water currents. Acoustic microphones and arrays on the Wave Glider have also been use to record passing ships and the vocalizations of whales and other mammals (an early use case of the company's technology).

The power needed to operate the sensors and computers is provided by solar panels, which are used to recharge lithium-ion batteries. Individual Wave Glider can be programmed for autonomous operation, or it can be steered by a remote pilot over the Internet. Continuous, near real time, communication is provided via satellite, cellular phone or radio links for piloting and data transmission.

All the Wave Glider computing power is Linux- and Java-based and includes a Hadoop cluster on the backend used to analyze the large data sets the devices collect, either individually or in groups. Duigou explained that the Wave Gliders can also be programmed to operate as a drone swarm. "For example, you can set up a fence around a marine protected area like Monterey Bay and give them all the goal of defending the border and reporting intruders. The robots can figure out who goes where."


A diver swims with a Wave Glider SV2 during operations in Hawaii (source: Liquid Rocket).

Find out more about Liquid Robotics here: http://liquidr.com/index.html

Thursday Oct 29, 2015

What’s Inside Oracle Cloud for You

By Roger Smith

Cloud Services for Developers

“Time is the greatest savings that you get from moving your development environment to the cloud,” said Oracle’s Bruno Borges, in his JavaOne presentation “Cloud Services for Developers: What’s Inside Oracle Cloud for You?” “If you have had to set up an on-premise Oracle database, or any other database, you know that it takes time to do that and you always ask yourself ‘Is these production-ready?’”

In his fast-paced, hands-on demo, Borges showed how developers can quickly get up to speed using Oracle’s pooled, shared, and elastically scalable software development platform, which gives organizations the ability to develop new applications in a quick and cost-effective way. He explained how developers can use their favorite IDE (Oracle JDeveloper, Eclipse, NetBeans) and build systems like Maven and Gradle to develop and deploy applications to the cloud.

Target different JDK Versions

Developers also have the option of choosing either Java SE 7 or 8 to leverage the particular language and JVM features their applications need. Since Oracle Java Cloud is an open platform, developers can also use any available open source or commercial Java library or framework in their applications.

Database Integration

Borges next walked through how to connect to Oracle Database Cloud Service to persist and manage application data as well as how to use Oracle Messaging Service to message between Java Cloud applications, on-premises applications, and Java EE and Node.js applications deployed in the Oracle Cloud. He then demonstrated how you can profile Java applications using Java SE Mission Control and Flight Recorder, in addition to the Oracle Application Performance Monitoring Cloud Service.

He also announced a new Docker Container Service that will soon be available from Oracle to help developers deploy applications into Docker containers.

In response to an audience question about Oracle Cloud scalability, Borges said that you can choose to run your application on your choice of compute size (i.e. the number of cores), and it will scale out dynamically on demand. He said they were also working on giving developers the capability to add scale programmatically using business logic, for example, in an e-commerce application that needs to scale up during the holiday season.

Wednesday Oct 28, 2015

3D Printing with a Java Rockstar

By Roger Smith

Controlling a 3D Printer with Java and VRL-Studio

I chatted with Java Rockstar Michael Hoffer on Tuesday at the Java Hub in the Exhibit hall about VRL-Studio, an innovative visual programming environment he created in Java that combines visual and text-based programming. Currently doing his PhD at the Department of Computer Science and Mathematics at the University of Frankfurt, Germany, Hoffer works at the Goethe-Center for Scientific Computing in Frankfurt. His research interests are in developing visual programming concepts in the field of modeling and simulation of highly complex physical processes including those modeled by medical scanning equipment.

VRL-Studio uses the Java Reflection API and Groovy to automatically generate interactive user interfaces, and has a powerful plug-in system that allows for easy integration of Java libraries, such as the 3-D modeling library JCSG. Hoffer demonstrated how he created a lightweight drone with four arms that are modeled on a complex structure found in the bones of birds. (see images below) "These drone parts can also be optimized to remove vibration. This structure cannot be created via milling, but it's a very easy task for a 3D printer."

It's also easy it is to turn a Raspberry PI board into a fully functional robot, Hoffer said, using 3D geometries created with the open source JCSG library and his VRL-Studio IDE. He then demonstrated his 'Pi on Wheels' bot, an affordable open source Do-It-Yourself robot, which he uses to teach Java-related technologies in the context of the Internet of Things.

Hoffer blogs about Java, JavaFX, and related technologies at http://mihosoft.eu/ Find out more at VRL-Studio here: http://vrl-studio.mihosoft.eu/


Lightweight drone with four arms modeled on a complex structure found in the bones of birds


Close up picture of drone arm printed by 3D printer.


'Pi on Wheels' bot, with 3D printed body and wheels

Tuesday Oct 27, 2015

Robots Look for Human Companions at JavaOne

By Roger Smith

Humaoid Robots Are Big in Japan

I spent part of this afternoon at the MakerZone, which is part of the Java Hub at this year's JavaOne Exhibit Hall, where I had a brief, enjoyable chat with Pepper, a 4-foot tall humanoid robot. Created by Aldebaran Robotics, Pepper is a social robot able to recognize and react to human emotions and carry on simple conversations in as many as 28 different languages. (I met and wrote about Nao, Pepper’s androgynous older sibling, in a recent JavaOne4kids workshop that showed how Nao could be taught to walk, talk, catch small objects and even dance). Besides being almost twice as tall as Nao, Pepper moves around on three omnidirectional wheels rather than feet like Nao. The Nao robot has been in development since 2006, while Pepper only has been around for a little over a year. Pepper’s added wheels give him greater range and almost 14 hours of battery life, which is three times the amount Nao has. The additional battery life was a requirement, said Nicholas Rigaud, Developer Community Leader for Aldebaran, since he was designed to greet and interact with customers in retail stores owned by Japanese mobile phone operator SoftBank Mobile, Aldebaran’s parent company.

Aldebaran has participated in three JavaOne conferences and keeps coming back each year because it's a great way to engage with a global community of software developers. "There is a great deal of entrepreneurial energy at these shows, which is what we're looking for," Rigaud said. "We want to get the word out about the programming resources and simulation tools we have to help developers create, fine tune and monetize their applications on the Aldebaran robotic platform." These resources include Choregraphe (the company's graphical drag and drop programming interface) that lets developers create applications with sample code containing dialog and behavior for the robots. The development environment includes a SDK simulator so that programmers can view their apps on a virtual 3D robot. Rigaud said there are currently 4,000 developers actively participating in the free developer program, of which roughly 25% are robot owners. 104 countries are represented, including 2,400 developers in Japan, 350 in the US and 300 in France. Find out more about Aldebaran's global developer program here: https://community.aldebaran.com/en/developerprogram

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