Wednesday Jun 26, 2013

Diving into Scala with Cay Horstmann

A new interview with Java Champion Cay Horstmann, now up on otn/java, titled  "Diving into Scala: A Conversation with Java Champion Cay Horstmann," explores Horstmann's ideas about Scala as reflected in his much lauded new book,  Scala for the Impatient.  None other than Martin Odersky, the inventor of Scala, called it "a joy to read" and the "best introduction to Scala". Odersky was so enthused by the book that he asked Horstmann if the first section could be made available as a free download on the Typesafe Website, something Horstmann graciously assented to.

Horstmann acknowledges that some aspects of Scala are very complex, but he encourages developers to simply stay away from those parts of the language. He points to several ways Java developers can benefit from Scala:

"For example," he says, " you can write classes with less boilerplate, file and XML handling is more concise, and you can replace tedious loops over collections with more elegant constructs. Typically, programmers at this level report that they write about half the number of lines of code in Scala that they would in Java, and that's nothing to sneeze at. Another entry point can be if you want to use a Scala-based framework such as Akka or Play; you can use these with Java, but the Scala API is more enjoyable. "

Horstmann observes that developers can do fine with Scala without grasping the theory behind it. He argues that most of us learn best through examples and not through trying to comprehend abstract theories. He also believes that Scala is the most attractive choice for developers who want to move beyond Java and C++.  When asked about other choices, he comments:

"Clojure is pretty nice, but I found its Lisp syntax a bit off-putting, and it seems very focused on software transactional memory, which isn't all that useful to me. And it's not statically typed. I wanted to like Groovy, but it really bothers me that the semantics seems under-defined and in flux. And it's not statically typed. Yes, there is Groovy++, but that's in even sketchier shape.

There are a couple of contenders such as Kotlin and Ceylon, but so far they aren't real.

So, if you want to do work with a statically typed language on the JVM that exists today, Scala is simply the pragmatic choice. It's a good thing that it's such a nice choice."

Learn more about Scala by going to the interview here.

Thursday Jun 06, 2013

A Java EE 7 Sneak Peek!

Next week, Wednesday the 12th, Oracle executives and technical experts will present the ins and outs of Java EE 7 in a live webcast

In this presentation, technical expert Arun Gupta gives a preview of the new and updated JSRs in Java EE 7. He also lays out the plans for Java EE 8. 

Join us for the live webcast: Introducing Java EE 7 on June 12th, 2013. It is free! 

Wednesday Mar 27, 2013

Real-Time Topic Modeling of Microblogs

A new article published on the front page of otn/java, by Yogesh Tewari and Rajesh Kawad, of Infosys Limited Labs in Bangalore, India, titled “Real-Time Topic Modeling of Microblogs,” explores “the challenge of real-time extraction of topics from a continuous stream of incoming microblogs or tweets that are particular to an application” that they created. From a simple tweet text, the application is designed to accurately suggest relevant topics discussed in the tweet, and provide real-time timelines of topics generated from the tweet streams.

They explain that this is no simple tasks since a tweet, “considered as a text corpus, contains only 140 characters and second, given their brevity, tweets may not provide useful information and may contain different forms of text such as ‘smileys’ and short-form URLs. Finally, tweets are generated in real time.”

Yogesh and Rajesh apply LDA (latent Dirichlet allocation) to topic model tweets and make use of the Machine Learning for Language Toolkit (MALLET) API as the implementation for LDA – all performed in a Java environment. The LDA implementation is in turn encapsulated within the MALLET API, which here functions as a command line–based Java tool.

As they state: “Our targets are the actual Java classes that perform the LDA logic whose methods we invoke with required input in real-time. Storm is our choice of a free and open source distributed real time computation engine implemented in Java and running in a distributed mode. Storm is highly scalable and easily capable of handling incoming tweet streams. We use Twitter4J to stream tweets, which require valid Twitter authentication. So our task is to design a topology that will consume tweet streams and output a timeline of topics.”
Check out the article here.

Thursday Mar 07, 2013

OpenJDK Test Fest and Devoxx UK

The London Java user group is organizing the first Test Fest on March 23rd in London with the collaboration of Oracle and IBM. "Contributors to OpenJDK need to be confident that their changes are sound and do not cause problems elsewhere." explains event host Martijn Verburg. Many test cases are already available but each application has different characteristics, environment and other attributes. The goal is to provide a larger and more comprehensive series of tests for Open JDK. 

If you cannot attend this event, the organizers and some of the guest presenters from Oracle and IBM - among them Oracle engineer Stuart Marks - will be at Devoxx UK starting Monday evening until Thursday (from March 25th until the 27th). Stuart Marks will present a Bird-of-a-Feather (BoF) session about "the testing of OpenJDK" on Tuesday, March 26th at 8:00pm and Martijn Verburg will talk about OpenJDK Hack Session Tuesday evening at 8:00pm and 9:00pm. Don't forget to register for Devoxx UK!

Additional online resources: Collaborate with the OpenJDK Quality team Online information FAQ

Wednesday Mar 06, 2013

Get started with Java!

Every year, the Java platform is growing with new features for enterprise, web, embedded and mobile application and developers. To help beginners navigate the platform and get started with Java technologies, new learning resources are available on the New to Java website. Developers will write a "Hello World" application, test their Java knowledge,  create user interfaces with JavaFX, and build enterprise applications with Java EE, desktop applications with Java SE or applications for mobile and embedded devices.  

Being up to date about current trends and networking with other developers are also critical for a career in programming. Developers can connect with top leaders in the community at conferences and community networks such as local user groups. They have the chance to contribute to open-source projects such as OpenJDK and Adopt-a-JSR to name just two.

Finally, parents and educators teaching programming to children will find software tools for young developers. They are free downloadable development tools with easy to use interfaces for young students. And Minecraft is so popular! Java technologist Daniel Green walks us through Minecraft mods with Java.

Thursday Feb 28, 2013

Java Tsunami on the Thames

London prepares for a surge of developer brainpower during the Devoxx UK conference on Tuesday and Wednesday, March 26th and 27th. Meet & Greet, global Java community, and Hackergarten are nice add-ons. Don't miss it - Register today

The fun really starts on Monday evening with an attendee Meet & Greet where attendees can relax, grab a drink and something to eat and, of course, meet fellow attendees and the speakers. 

In addition to U.K speakers, many international guests are scheduled, notably from the US. Twenty-eight user groups from across Europe are attending too. A veritable army of experts will be on hand to share their expertise with Devoxx attendees.  

Hackergarten takes place during the conference. There's no time limit; participants can stay and code for as long as they want. Just bring a laptop and write a plugin, a tutorial, a small feature, or a bug fix for a project that interests you alongside several open-source experts willing to share their knowledge. The organizers of two community projects called Adopt-a-JSR and Adopt Open JDK will be there to explain how to contribute to the future Java releases. 

Thursday Feb 21, 2013

Register Now for Devoxx UK and Devoxx France 2013

There's only a little over a month to go before Devoxx UK on March 26 and 27 in London and Devoxx France on March 27 to 29 in Paris. The conference schedules are up and space is tight, so register today before they are sold out!

"Cloud, architecture and security" is a new conference track this year. Other tracks are Java SE, methodologies, Java EE, web & big data, new languages on the JVM, and future Devoxx. Developers will get a shot at peer discussions in Bird-of-a-Feathers, learn tips and tricks during quickies and get in-depth technical information in hour-long talks or in the three hour hands-on-labs.  "You could learn something that will help in your day job. Maybe it's a better use of patterns, technologies or methodologies you're utilizing right now" explains Trisha Gee, one of the Devoxx organizers

The conference also presents great networking opportunities with leaders in the Java community and renowned speakers who wrote popular technical books. Some of those well-known speakers are Kirk Pepperdine, Peter Pilgrim, Stephen Chin, Arun Gupta, and Markus Eisele, just to name a few.

Oracle is a European Platinum Partner of the three Devoxx conferences in the U.K., France and Belgium. Come and join us in London and Paris next month.

Wednesday Feb 13, 2013

JavaFX Open Source Update!

Oracle has started to open source JavaFX, the rich client platform for Java applications. The list of open sourced projects will be growing in the next couple of weeks with an additional 7 projects. "We are also going to open source our iOS and Android implementations over the next couple of months" announced Richard Bair, architect of the JavaFX platform, in his blog.

Monday Feb 04, 2013


The annual Free Open-Source Developers' European Meeting took place last weekend in Belgium. The free event brought together 5,000 hackers from the open source community. There were 477 speakers and 488 sessions with a mix of keynotes, lightning talks, certification exams and developer rooms talks.

Tasha Carl, Java architect and the leader of the Brussels Java user group, wrote a blog about FOSDEM and the Free Java developer room. She mentioned Java talks and posted pictures making you feel as if you were there. "The Free Java dev room at FOSDEM is since many years the biggest OpenJDK meet-up around. You can not only see, but really high-five celebrities like – this year – Mark Reinhold, Chief Architect of the Java Platform Group at Oracle, Sean Coffey, Oracle JDK engineer and maintainer of OpenJDK 7u, Steve Poole, developer and evangelist working since ever  for IBM on the JVM, Simon Phipps, Andrew Haley, Charles Nutter, JRuby lead developer speaking about InvokeDynamic,…" she commented.

In another blog, Mani mentioned that "the OpenJDK topic has got massive coverage with 17 speakers, speaking and holding events covering various topics." Java community leaders including Martijn Verburg and Ben Evans were involved in the Java track. In addition to Brussels JUG, members of LJC JUG, CEJUG and others participated at the event.

In her blog, Heather VanCura shares the Java Community Process (JCP) presentation titled "JCP State of the Nation and Future Directions," as well as links to JCP.Next and the community program Adopt-a-JSR programs.

Friday Feb 01, 2013

The JCP Evolution!

Recent changes to the Java Community Process (JCP) program "focus on the way the organization itself is structured and organized" explained Patrick in this interview.  The changes will result from the implementation of three Java Specification Requests (JSRs). The first JSR, the JSR 348, makes the process more open and transparent to facilitate developers' participation. It was released a year ago and Heather witnessed increased transparency in projects,  additional participation and a simplified release process. "They are using public issue trackers and public discussion alias on projects. More people from the community are commenting and participating in the JSRs. The process of releasing final and maintenance releases is more agile," she commented.

She explained the different options for developers' participation in the JCP. Java user groups may become JCP members at no charge and contribute as a group. Individuals and user groups can contribute to the community initiative Adopt-A-JSR. Developers can give feedback on the transparency of a JSR process. Individuals, corporations and non-profit organizations (JUGs for example) can join the JCP. They then can comment on specs, join an expert group and become a spec lead

Information about the JCP program is available at Watch the recent presentation about Adopt-a-JSR with Martin Verburg and Java EE 7 JSR projects with Arun Gupta


Insider News from the Java Team at Oracle!



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