Tonight I’m going back home after attending JavaOne 2010. These are my fresh notes about this event.
If you are reading this, you know something about Java. At the very least you know that this is a case-sensitive programming language and the HelloWorld is not the same as helloworld. If you don’t know this much, consider listening my new audio podcasts “Java for Blondes“.
On the same note, Sun’s JavaOne was not the same as Oracle’s javaone. This year it’s a small conference. It felt small. Even though it’s a part of the huge Oracle Open World conference (41 thousand attendees), JavaOne crowd was modest. I don’t have the numbers, but based on my past experience. It seems that only between three and four thousands of Java people are here. At the end of 90th, the peek attendance at JavaOne allegedly was around 15K, and in 2006 – 12K.
Forget about technical session attended by 500+ developers. Most of the auditoriums were for 100 or less attendees. Javaone 2010 had obvious symptoms of men disorder called Shrinkage .
The other thing I miss was the excitement. Didn’t feel it. Oracle is about business. I got a feeling that lawyers run Oracle, not engineers. Just read these evidences I’ve collected during these three days.
1. To get the wi-fi access, you’d have to read and agree to the following statement, ”Use of this Internet connection is intended solely for Oracle OpenWorld, Java One and Oracle Develop attendees. Unauthorized access or use may result in termination of your access, disciplinary action and/or civil or criminal penalties. To the extent permitted by law, your use may be monitored.” But guess what, Internet connection really worked! Now I know, that the wi-fi issues on other conferences are caused by criminal bastards that are sneaking into the event venues and perform unauthorized access.
2. Every slide deck of the presenters working for Oracle had a slide that started like this “The preceding is intended to outline our general product directions. It is intended for information purposes only…” Basically they didn’t live me a chance to sue them if the syntax of closures in the project Lambda will change between now and release of Java 8 in 2012.
3. Before the Java keynote on Monday night, the voice have read pretty long message from the lawyers. This message was also conveniently displayed on the screen for deaf people.
4. Oracle employees are trained to say “No comments” to strangers. First, one of the Oracle people told me this at a party, and then, executive VP of product development has demonstrated this technique when asked about Gosling’s initiatives by Computer World.
I don’t know if Sun Microsystems made any profit on previous JavaOne’s, but for Oracle this conference is clearly business. I’m not even talking about the airline-quality lunches. They wanted to save money on the venue. The rooms for presentations were smaller than needed and people who didn’t pre-registered for the talk routinely were standing in lines hoping to get in. I wouldn’t think it take a rocket scientist to predict that Brian Goetz will easily fill the room. Apparently I was wrong. After waiting in line for 15 minutes into the presentation I gave up.
People who planned the room/talks had no clue who is who in the Java community. Because of this, lots of talks were rescheduled . If you didn’t pre-register, upon arrival you could find out that this session is not here any longer. Where? Sorry apparently it was cancelled. The scheduling and notification systems were poorly done.
One hands-on lab (was there more than one lab?) was rescheduled 20 minutes before it was supposed to start, and two hours later went as an instructor’s demo because of some technical issues. Unpreparedness.
The bright side
I didn’t pay for the conference pass. My kudos to Oracle for giving free passes to all Java Champions from around the world who wanted to come. I also enjoyed preferred seating at the JavaOne, private meeting with Olympic Champion Apolo Ohno, party with JUG leaders, and nice jacket with the JC logo. My special thanks to people at Oracle who are responsible for JUGs and Java Champions programs.
When I was walking to the Hilton hotel to register at JavaOne, I noticed these colorful pavement signs. Did you get the message? I did. Oracle Develop and JavaOne are moving in opposite directions. Yes, JavaOne was Cinderella at Oracle’s ball. But the Cindirella story had a happy end, remember? Pretty soon expect to see an online post addressed to Oracle regarding the future of JavaOne. Something’s gotta give.