Yesterday we had NetBeans day at Jazoon here in Zurich. It was fun for me, also because we had three evangelists from our team and it was the first time that me, Gregg and Brian did a NetBeans day together. Usually there's only one or maximum two of us due the cost-saving reason but we met here because we all do presentations at Jazoon. We also had a presenter from NetBeans dream team: Fabrizio Giudici. He created one of the nicest applications on top of NetBeans platform: BlueMarine, so it was great to have him presenting as well. Last but not least Fabiola Rios was presenting (my Mexican colleague from Prague). This presentation was fun!
So it was a nice afternoon spent with developers using NetBeans or curious users of other IDE's and you can read more about it from Fabrizio's, Felipe Gaucho's and Gregg Sporar's blogs.
We got interesting questions, both on stage but more importantly during our conversations after the event - yes we had good food and drinks. I'd like to answer some of the questions publicly because I thougth they might be of interest of many people, even though most of them are not technical this time.
Q: I am building an application on top of NetBeans platform. Is it ok to monetize it?
A: Yes, you can sell your application. NetBeans is covered by the CDDL license which allows this. The only important rule is that if you make changes to the platform itself (which means modify code of NetBeans) you need to publish it so that the community can take advantage of the improvements. Other than that you can sell your NetBeans-based application for as much as you want and take advantage of the innovations that happen with every release.
Q: Can Sun help me with marketing my application based on NetBeans platform?
A: Absolutely. If you are building a commercial application on NetBeans you can sign up as a partner of NetBeans and we will promote your application. You will be listed in the partner directory and each of the partners can get a slot on the homepage of netbeans.org as a featured partner. The whole netbeans.org site has over 80 millions hits per month (yes you are reading it correctly, 80 millions), which translates to about 1.1 million unique visitors. So we can provide your product with good world-wide visibility at netbeans.org, our mailing lists, blogs and even at some of the live events around the globe. There are other ways of co-marketing possible - you can contact me for more information at roman dot strobl at sun dot com.
Q: The management in my company decided to stick to a particular
IDE. Although I show other developers in the company that they can be
more productive in NetBeans, people do not want to consider other
tools. Can Sun help me with this?
A: If you work for a larger company we can send one of our evangelists
to do a customer visit and do a presentation about NetBeans and other
Sun technologies. If your company is already buying hardware, software
or services from Sun organizing such presentation is easier. If you are
interested in such a customer visit, we can try to come to your
company, do a presentation about NetBeans and answer any questions. We
can't come everywhere, but you can contact me at roman dot strobl at
sun dot com and I can find out if someone from Sun can come to do a presention in
Q: I really enjoyed NetBeans day. Why don't you guys come more often to Zurich/Switzerland?
A: We'd love to. Unfortunately Zurich not one of the cheapest places in
the world, but we'll definitely come again (hopefully together with
next Jazoon conference). If you are interested, we also are going to
organize events in surrounding countries in next fiscal year such as
Germany and Italy. In general we are working on growing NetBeans
adoption worldwide and we focus on countries with largest developer
populations. But we always try to visit places we haven't been before,
supposing we can meet a significant amount of developers. If you think
we could come to your country/city and you think you can get a good
crowd of attendees for NetBeans day, contact me and I'll see if we can
Q: How does Sun make money on NetBeans & Java?
A: There are several answers to this question. Sun makes money on
NetBeans & Java by delivering various services such as
consultations, trainings, education, certifications, licensing and
other similar services. These services are becoming more popular as
more organizations implement open source - they need consultations and
other services for mission-critical applications. The second answer is that there is also a
connection between using NetBeans and using other Sun technologies such
as Java EE 5 - Glassfish, Java Enterprise System and in the end it goes
all the way to the hardware and storage. Developers who use NetBeans happily
prefer other Sun technologies before competition and help us with adoption of these
technologies (and at the end with sales as well). So we want as many developers as
possible happily using NetBeans - that's why we invest
so much into developer communities. NetBeans is the entry point to
Sun's value chain and the more people use NetBeans, the more
opportunity we have to monetize our technologies.
Q: What about support for Groovy? Why did you choose Ruby over Groovy?