Food for my thoughts after a week at conferences

This week, I attended both Jenkins User Conference Paris, and Devoxx France. Though I’ve already reported notes about the sessions I went to Jenkins, Devoxx day 1, day 2 and day 3), there were some underlying trends I wanted to write down in order to clear my thoughts.

Power to the programmers

Programmers form the basis of software industry. Like many of their brethren in other industries, this means they are subject to unlimited exploitation (at least, it’s what I’ve observed in France) and are not well considered. A trend I’ve seen at Devoxx is for developers to reclaim their rightful part in the value production chain. Interestingly, it’s not an individual movement but a collective one.

Evolve or die

In contract, with the rapid changes occuring in both hardware and software, programmers have a duty to themselves to constantly learn new things or become irrelevant the next day. As a consequence, developers should be jack-of-all-trades and no one trick pony. In particulare, those who have no prior experience of concurrency should get some post haste or they will face unexpected bugs coming from today’s multicore architectures.

The decline of JavaEE

Although Java is still seen as "the" language, which is a good thing in a Java conference, there weren’t many talks on JavaEE. It’s as if the platform is becoming a thing of the past, without much ado (none in fact).


Some say the JVM will be Java’s legacy, in no small part due to the recent explosion of languages. Likewise, there’s a growing part of applications that have a very short lifespan. Both factors make me predict that in the near-future, emphasis will be not on how to implement features, but on the features themselves.

The cloud is here to stay

In parallel to JavaEE’s fall, the cloud is rising…​ very fast, whether it’s IaaS, Paas or SaaS: Google App Engine, Jelastic, Cloud Foundry, Heroku, CloudBees re only some remarkable examples. All these solution enable very short time-to-market, a necessity in today’s world.

For me, this translates into some paths worth exploring in the following months:

  • Check Java 1.4, 5, 6 and 7 ways of handling concurrency. Search for third-party libraries that complete them (such as Akka)
  • Go deeper into Scala. And start learning Groovy, in earnest
  • Get me a laptop with a killer configuration and play with DevOps tools. I was amazed in a talk to learn how these tools were used to create a training environment
  • Think globally about code quality: JavaScript is code too. The code base is becoming larger and larger (much to my chagrin, but I’ve to deal with it nonetheless). Do the same for PHP
  • Stay in touch with all those nice clouds platform and their offerings
Nicolas Fränkel

Nicolas Fränkel

Developer Advocate with 15+ years experience consulting for many different customers, in a wide range of contexts (such as telecoms, banking, insurances, large retail and public sector). Usually working on Java/Java EE and Spring technologies, but with focused interests like Rich Internet Applications, Testing, CI/CD and DevOps. Also double as a trainer and triples as a book author.

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Food for my thoughts after a week at conferences
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