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Archive for June 28th, 2005

Queueing

To form a line is the natural instinct of JavaOne attendees. Lines are everywhere at this thing. There are thousands of attendees, and only about 10 or fewer sessions going on at once. It’s easy for even a seemingly obscure session to be at standing room only. And you have to be prepared if you’re looking at getting into a popular session; the lines form quickly and organically. I was considering attending a session on Portlets and JavaServer Faces, but the line stretched out of one building and into the next. Seeing as how I have no immediate plans on utilizing either technology for our project in the immediate future, I passed so I could talk to you.

I’ve found the sessions I’ve attended today to be more interesting than yesterday’s. I started with a talk on SOA and Enterprise Service Bus. I think I’ve mentioned in the past; I’ve been experimenting with Mule to provide a communication channel for the various servers in our farm. The premise/promise of ESB’s seems a little overkill for this, but Jobster may want to use this type of technology in the future as it communicates with external machines for job feeds, ATS vendors, etc. Good to know where the industry is headed with these types of technologies.

I followed that session with one on “The New EJB 3.0 Persistence API”. Gavin King, author of Hibernate, was one of the speakers; I didn’t heckle him, as I suggested to my coworkers that I might do. He seemed to have enough trouble on his own making it through his portion of the presentation. The Persistence API in EJB 3.0 seems very hibernate-like; I’ll be interested to hear more about how these two technologies will converge during Gavin’s talk tomorrow.

I just left a talk on XQuery. That little buzzword has appeared on several slides in other talks I’ve attended, and the synopsis promised that they’d discuss how to make XML sing and dance using this technology. Given that I didn’t know what to expect, I certainly wasn’t disappointed. The presentation was the most entertaining I’d been to so far. XQuery looks like a really powerful replacement to XSLT, which I’ve found painful and confusing to use in the past. The real-time demos that Jason Hunter gave of XQuery pulling data out of a collection of O’Reilly books in XML format was compelling. Even more so was the 60-line XQuery source code that could find all references to an image in a docbook, displaying the paragraphs that the image was referenced in, the synopsis of the articles those paragraphs appeared, and the feedback to those articles tha tappeared in later journals. I don’t know if I’ll ever need this technology, but it was fun to watch something so obviously useful and powerful in action.

One more tech session, then dinner followed by the nightly BOF’s. Hopefully tonight’s will be more compelling than last night’s.

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Feast or Famine

JavaOne 2005, Day 2. I slept in and missed the opening General Session. No huge loss, though I caught the tail end on the huge monitor showing it outside the room. Apparently Scott McNealy gave James Gosling a Java Lifetime Achievement Award, which I’m pretty sure he referred to as a “Dukey”. Now, I realize that “Duke” is the name of the blob known as the Java mascot, but to give someone as esteemed as James Gosling anything that sounds like “dookie” is really unfortunate. But I digress.

Seeing as how I skipped the general session, I didn’t think missing the first round of technical sessions didn’t seem like much of a sin, especially since there wasn’t anything in them that sounded particularly compelling to me. But then the second round had 4 different sessions I would’ve been happy to sit thought. Such is the story of my current JavaOne experience; any particular round is likely to have either nothing of interest, or multiple sessions I wouldn’t want to miss.

I had to make a difficult choice for this second round, day 2. Rod Johnson, whom I have a bit of a mancrush on, was giving his Spring talk. I’ve never heard this talk, but I don’t think an introduction to Spring would’ve been the best use of my time (if only he’d been speaking in the first round!). So instead I’m listening to a talk on Enterprise Service Busses and SOA. It’s already started, so I should stop blogging.

More later.

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