|Taylor Street Cafe|
Maybe it's because since I first spoke at JavaOne last year I've met a lot of people in this ecosystem - Oracle Java people, other conference organisers, Java User Group leaders, speakers and attendees from all sorts of places - and seeing many of them in one place is fun and makes you feel like you're "home". I'd be sat in the Taylor St Cafe area and people would sit down and hang out with me. I'd be hiding somewhere trying to write a presentation and people would say Hi. I'd be separated from the other LJC guys while I grabbed a glass of water and someone would stop to chat. It was awesome. I even managed to get a tiny bit of work done between socialising.
Personally, I have learnt very valuable lessons:
- Doing two conferences back to back is exhausting. If I do it ever again, I really need to optimise my travel between them (i.e. not fly from St Louis to London and then to San Francisco 48 hours later).
- Especially if I have two conferences back to back, but almost definitely as a rule, it's best to have the materials for presentations complete before the conference. I probably would have enjoyed myself even more, and definitely had a chance to see a lot more sessions, if I hadn't had one presentation to finish.
- Presenting four sessions in one conference is extremely challenging. Technically I only had two full-length presentations (the Disruptor presentation I've done at OSCON/GOTO/QCon etc and my Technical Approach to Women, which was more like a very structured BOF), a short 20-minute talk and a panel. But I think one full-length presentation and a couple of other bits is probably a much more sane amount. Especially given 1) and 2) above.
There will be a bunch of other blog posts mentioning the inconvenience of having it in three hotels, the poor suitability of some of the rooms, the difficulty of sharing San Francisco with Oracle Open World, the mediocre food. But you don't spend the money to fly halfway across the world to San Francisco for the crappy box lunches. You fly here to meet - face-to-face - some of the people who created Java, those who are steering it now, and the community that continues to make it relevant and fun.
Highlights for me:
|James Gosling talks about Robots!|
- Technical keynote
- Dr Robert Ballard's keynote
- Community keynote
- James Gosling on stage!
- Having well-known Java people say Hi to me out of the blue
- My Women in Technology session
I already mentioned the technical keynote in my summary of Sunday, but I forgot to talk about Dr Robert Ballard's section, which is crazy because it was so inspiring. What I got out of that was how much fun technology can be, and how kids are really ready to be amazed and engaged with science and technology, provided you get them young enough. I also really loved that the photos of all the scientists showed great diversity, something he seems to take very seriously. His comment was "A child needs to see their face 20 years out to know they can play in the game. Don't sell science, sell scientists and engineers". The point I took from that was that by focussing on "science" and "technology", we could be losing people - by showcasing the people, the talent, the passions, we are much more likely to engage children. And I think that stands for adults as well.
|The LJC panel about our involvement in the Java Community Process|
|The LJC in the Community Keynote|
- Duke's Choice Award for Innovation and Contributions to the Community
- JCP Member of the Year with SouJava
But in case this is useful to anyone who is reading this, next year come to JavaOne if:
- You want to know what's coming up for Java the platform or Java the language
- You want to meet, or at least see presenting, the people who are actually making these changes
- You want to meet other Java developers from around the world - whether you want to find someone with the same problems as you, or want to see different issues that face people.
- You want to see the Power Of User Groups!
- You want to understand how decisions are made with regards to the future of Java
- You want to meet like-minded people
|The Exhibitors Hall was like Vegas! But there was a buzz which was infectious|
And finally, some of my sessions will be available, audio and slides only, via the content catalog. Look for the following:
- UGF10467 - Benefits of Open Source
- CON3732 - Concurrent Programming with the Disruptor
- CON5130 - London Java Community: How to Change the World
- CON11338 - The Problem with Women: A Technical Approach