Devoxx ’12 – Wednesday
On Wednesday, the actual conference offered a myriad of talks on different themes. There were enough options for any type of Java (and not only) developers to pick something interesting from each group of parallel running talks. There were five groups of seven conference sessions taking place at the same time in different rooms at the Devoxx venue.
Devoxx 2012 keynote started with an impressive show of a robot dance-singing group. I guess the five, two feet tall machines with legs and arms were trying to mimic the Backstreet Boys or some other 90’s boys group. Anyway, I guess they did good. I could only see a live video stream from another room. The introductory talk was taking place in a full room where the organizers stopped the entrance a few minutes before the session started.
Later I have found out that the robots were brought by a company that also offers some tools to program them. I’ll probably find out more details tomorrow as it is impossible to not be curious about this.
Stephan Janssen did the welcome talk and presented a few statistics like: “3400 devoxxians from 41 Countries”, “200 sessions”, etc.
After that he informed the attendees about the voting system that was implemented specially for this conference. Each participant has the possibility to make a vote after each session using the personal NFC wristband to tell if he/she liked a particular session or disliked it. Each room was equiped with a home made looking device that scanned the wristbands and recorded the votes. The entire system is running on Raspberry Pi devices which by the way seem to get a lot of attention in here. Driven by curiosity to find out more details on how these things work, I have later attended a presentation were Simon Ritter explained how Java can be used with Raspberry Pi.
Stephan continued the keynote talking about Devoxx4Kids which is an initiative to introduce children to programming concepts.
A bit later – updates about Devoxx France and Devoxx UK followed.
Parleys.com – the eLearning platform were the Devoxx presentation videos will be uploaded – Stephan’s “baby” is currently rewritten. Both the end user interface and the client for uploading content will be HTML5 based. There was a demo of the unreleased yet Parleys where it seemed that the users will have the possibility to view and edit audio/video content and synchronize slides using a cool and easy to use UI.
The second keynote was Oracle’s “Make The Future Java” presented by Nandini Ramani.
The third one – by Neal Ford called “When Geek Leaks” – a presentation built around Neal’s interdisciplinary “geeks” concept. He talked about his “Presentation Patterns” book, continuous delivery and the challenges of implementing CD in organizations.
The keynote was the most liked talk. However, there were a few issues with the “like” votes calculation which caused incorrect display of the leader boards on the screens during the day.
After the keynotes, I have attended:
7 THINGS: HOW TO MAKE GOOD TEAMS GREAT (Sven Peters)
The presentation was focused on what developers can do to bring more excitement in their day to day work they do for their companies. A few solutions that were tried by Atlassian developers were presented. A few of them: how to gain more “flow” time, how to learn new things at work, “ship it days”, etc.
JAVA MESSAGE SERVICE 2.0 UPDATE Quickie (Nick Wright)
JMS 2.0 will include new features and a simplified API with less boilerplate code. JSR343 spec release is expected in April 2013
ON THE ROAD TO JDK 8: LAMBDA, PARALLEL LIBRARIES, AND MORE (Joe Darcy)
This session treated lambda expressions and default methods as they are going to be available in JDK 8. Also, an overview of the parallel libraries that will be implemented behind the lambdas was presented.
BEHAVIOUR DRIVEN DEVELOPMENT ON THE JVM – A STATE OF THE UNION (John Smart)
The title of this session attracted me because I wanted to see some tools for this extension (or rather style) of Test Driven Development. BDD was presented around the concept of a “Common Language” to be used by developers, business analysts, testers and business people. There were code examples of jbehave, easyb, thucydides – tools for writing acceptance tests.
DO YOU LIKE COFFEE WITH YOUR DESSERT? JAVA AND THE RASPBERRY PI (Simon Ritter)
Since one of the Devoxx’ stars seemed to be the Raspberry Pi, I have decided to go to this. First, the Raspberry Pi device was presented in the context of ARM processors evolution. Then there was a section about how java works on these single board computers and finally a demo of a joystick controlled robot arm that was following the speaker’s commands.
SERVICE VERSIONING IN SOA AND CLOUD (Ignaz Wanders)
Addressed the problem of changing contracts for services with many clients. Backwards compatibility and version mediation strategies were the key words of this talk. As the speaker said, there is no standardization of managing version changes, so he took the challenge of proposing a few best practices in case of web services in SOA. And the suggestions were related to the use of governance.
It was my first day at my first Devoxx conference and it was a great one. Just waiting to see tomorrow’s events.