Sunday, October 25, 2009

NFJS Conference Atlanta 2010 - Day 3

The last day is over. It's been a great conference. Without a doubt, JVM language alternatives dominated the conference sessions. Since I won a book on Scala yesterday, I will checkout that language out next :-)

Today, I attended two sessions by Ken Sipe: "Architecture and Scaling" and "So you want to be an Architect". I particularly enjoyed the latter one, as Ken gave a very pragmatic overview of his view on what the qualifications of an architect ought to be. I had to smile when somebody from the audience asked Ken how as an architect you can possibly keep up with the constant technical innovations and the sheer breath of required knowledge and Ken responded that he doesn't watch any TV. Well, I catch myself weekly listening to the Java Posse, SE Engineering Radio, etc. while doing the dishes, cleaning up etc. And with planning for AJUG meetings, the next Devnexus conference etc. there is not much time left for TV either (Although I still leave some space for my weekly dose of Southpark ;-)

I guess you really have to like what you're doing in order to fulfill the requirements of an Architect.    

During the Birds of Feather (BOF) session I asked the panelists on their opinion about Python, which was never even mentioned at the conference but which at the same time is heavily used in computer science teaching at colleges in Georgia. Their opinion was, that it's white-space issue is just too much of a limiting factor for using it in HTML scripting, using it as a DSL etc. and also that there are some issues with the user community itself. And thus, they said, there were just better alternatives at this point.

During the afternoon I attended 2 sessions by Ted Neward
  • The Busy Java Developer's Guide to Advanced Collections
  • The Busy Java Developer's Guide to Hacking with the JDK 
Both sessions were interesting but I wish Ted had given some more real world examples for use cases of Apache Commons Collections and the Google Collections Library. In his latter talk he showed an example of how to add functionality to core JVM classes. Interesting, but talking about "experimental and highly hacky stuff".

Overall, this was an absolutely wonderful conference. Looking forward to the next one! As always: Jay keep up the good work!

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