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My recap of JavaLand

This week, I have been attending the first edition of JavaLand in Brühl, organized by Oracle User Groups of Germany, Austria and Switzerland. Here’s quick recap of my experience there.

The first thing that deserves special mention is that the event took place in a theme park. Picture this, an empty theme park (or more likely a part of it) only opened for specially privileged geeks (like me).

You can imagine that some people doing this stuff non-stop, like 8 times in a row – where in standard conditions you wait like 1.5 hours to enjoy it. Pretty crazy, huh?

Now, the serious stuff: sessions I attended. Note that only could choose from English sessions, as my German is quite poor.

Is It A Car? Is It A Computer? No, It’s a Raspberry Pi Java Carputer by Simon Ritter
A feedback on how to wire a Raspberry Pi into one’s car and get car metrics – such as torque, nicely shown on a graphic display. Doing that require some hands-on manipulation, as well as some hardware knowledge, but if you happen to have both, you can really create great stuff. Despite me having none of them, I learned that modern-day cars provide interfaces to read data from.
JavaFX Apps in the Real World
Six talkers for a 45 minutes slot, of various interest. The most stunning piece was a demo for a JavaFX application involving Sudoku grids. That app is able to parse a Sudoku grid presented to a connected webcam, resolve it and then display the final result on the video image embedded in the app!
55 New Features in Java SE 8 by Simon Ritter
A nice refresher of all new stuff brought by Java 8. Of course, lambdas were (again) much talked about, but also static and default methods for interfaces as well as the new APIs (including Date & Time) and various enhancements. This is was a very worthwhile talk in a limited amount of time.
JVM and application bottlenecks troubleshooting with simple tools by Daniel Witkowski
Description of the JVM, its memory model (Eden, Young Generation, Old Generation, …) and its available options. Despite the talker warning and apparent good will, I couldn’t quite shake the feeling this was a pep talk: the conclusion was JVM tuning is hard (as if people didn’t know) and the simple tool referenced in the title is a commercial product.
Modular JavaScript by Sander Mak, Paul Bakker
Real interesting stuff about designing JavaScript applications with modularity in mind. Basically, a detailed typology of JavaScript modularity solutions according to different locations (server, client and both) was presented. In particular, the talk described Asynchronous Module Definition (AMD) and the RequireJS implementation. I definitely have to re-read slides, once they are available.
Spring 4, Java EE 7 or Both? by Ivar Grimstad
This talk picked my curiousity. After having presented Spring 4 and JavaEE 7 in the context of web applications, the speaker showed leads on how to develop applications integration both Spring 4 and JavaEE 7. However, IMHO, the talk missed the real point: why would do that? I would have expected this to have been the main point of the talk…
Apache TomEE, JavaEE Web Profile and More on Tomcat by David Blevins
Presentation of the famed TomEE (pronounced Tommy) application server, as well its backing company, Tomitribe. I did learn nothing new, but it was a pleasure to see David Blevins on stage!
The Adventurous Developer’s Guide to Application Servers by Simon Maple & Oliver White
A really good show about Rebel Labs Great Java Application Server Debate, with interactive data from the audience set back into the presentation. I already read the report, but the presentation was really entertaining.
Testing the Enterprise Layers: The ABCs of Integration Testing by Andrew Lee Rubinger
A presentation built around the Continuous Enterprise Development book, written by the speaker and Aslak Knutsen. The latter presents the basics as well as the Arquillian tool. I really have to read the book!

Myself, I presented Cargo Culting and Memes in JavaLand (I’ll let people say what they thought about it in the comments).

All in all, I have to say that for a first edition, it was really interesting as well as packed with geekyness. See you there next year, and Jatumba!

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