Friday, January 11, 2008

Sun Tech Days Atlanta

It has been a long day. Nevertheless a really good one – We had Sun Tech Days here on Atlanta and I got the chance to attend the conference today. The whole event had started at 9am and I was able to leave shortly after 8pm. This was a great event and the best thing – it was completely free (including breakfast, lunch, cake, beer/wine and of course T-shirts)

The presentations were really good for the most part. The day started with the keynote speech given by Jeet Kaul speaking about the latest developments at Sun such as Glassfish, Netbeans 6 and JavaFX. Also, if you think the Nintendo Wii is too boring, check out Project Sun Spot.

Also, I need to check out Open Solaris – They showed, how you can natively run various VMs in it (such as Windows, Linux etc.). Another cool feature is ZFS

The first presentation I attended was “A Rich Application Platform: Java FX”. It looks promising not just for writing Flash replacement web applications but also for simplifying Swing development. However there are still a few missing pieces, the biggest being the lack of a modular JVM. However SUN said that the modular JVM may be released by May/June 2008. Lastly the speaker talked about the Java FX platform which is basically an operating system for mobile phones and using JavaFX for the UI.

I wonder how it compares to Google’s Android.

Next I went to the SOA and OpenESB presentation which talked about BPEL, OpenESB and JBI. OpenESB’s tool support using Netbeans 6 looked really slick. I have to check that one out. The BPEL designer actually looked quite a bit better than JBoss’ offering (visually)

The I went to the “Filthy Rich Clients” presentation which showed you best practices approaches when using Swing. The presentation talked about how to create effects in Swing and what the new Timing Framework is all about. All the talking about the cool stuff you can do with Swing makes me want to do a little Swing project…The corresponding book might be a good buy.
Next was the presentation titled “Java SE 6 Top 10 Features and Java SE7”. The presentation talked about all major new features in Java 6 such as the script engine support, support for webservices, GUI improvements (I like the built-in support for Splash screens) and the SwingWorker support.

One feature, that looked quite intriguing were the Troubleshooting Tools of Java 6.

The next talk was all about Dojo. The widgets are nice but for straight server calls I do prefer DWR instead of hand-coding some JSon structures. Unfortunately, the presentation did not mention DWR once. Nevertheless, it will be interesting to see what happens since DWR joined the Dojo Foundation.

The last presentation of the conference compared a Java EE application, a Seam application and a Spring application to each other using JPA and JSF. All three applications implemented the same feature set.

That was it – Afterward Sun provided free beer and wine and I spent a little bit more time networking before heading back home…writing this blog.

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