JUDCon 2012 – an experience!

My first Java exclusive conference!

I arrived at the venue right on time. Surprize, there were a lot of people already holding their welcome kits. Conference was already running quite smoothly. Wifi worked most of the time. The sessions, lunch, tea were always on time. Actually, there were people assigned to ring bells, just like in schools, to notify timeout during lunch and tea breaks 🙂

The whole confenence was revolving around four major topics: JBoss AS7, Infinispan, Drools and OpenShift.

Opening talk was given by Harish Pillay, Red Hat Global Community Architecture Team.

The Keynote of the day was by Bruno Georges. He mentioned some interesting trends of which are:

  • There are about 4 times the processors compared to the number or people in United States alone and growing. Meaning that the processing power is available in abundance.
  • There is a significant growth in Ad-Hoc Social Networks for businesses

Now where is the industry heading? In perspective of Java, Java ME/EC is going to be merged with Java SE/EE. SQL based data is moving towards NoSQL which is now leading us to NewSQL. The software stacks are moving towards ubiquitous computing i.e. even smaller handheld devices, are capable of running these software stacks. To sum it up, it was a very factual and a visionary talk by Bruno.

I will defer the other topics till later. Let me talk about the topics I liked the most:

JPA – Painless Persistence

Painless Persistence by Greg Kable was a very engaging talk. It was kind of an OOPS/ORM primer. The concepts were explained in a very general terms like “why/when to use ORM and when not to”, Skinny Objects and their pitfalls. Why to avoid optimization? Such concepts could be applied to any kind of ORM in practice. Even if you didn’t know anything about JPA or Hibernate, you could understand the point Greg was trying to make. And by the way, there are 3 rules of optimization: don’t do it, don’t do it, don’t do it. Before deciding on optimizing part(s) of your application always think of these 3 rules. It is just as a reminder that it might not make sense to put efforts on optimizing your applications first of all.

Future of Seam Framework

Seam 3 is final release of Seam project. That’s it. All future efforts are directed towards Apache DeltaSpike from now on. So, do think twice before using Seam for your new projects. However, Seam being a widely used framework, the bugfixes and mainitainence will still be available. And contributes, checkout the DeltaSpike project now!

Polyglot Revolution

This was an intersting topic. What it means is that many JVM based languages (ceylon, scala, clojure, ruby, python) and their frameworks ( like Ruby On Rails ) will be available integrated with JBoss AS. TorqueBox is a unique example of this. With this effort, you can use all the power and features of Java EE stack right into your other language frameworks. Same argument applies for Immutant.

JBoss Application Server

In the recent years, JBoss has seen a lot of increase in the number of hits on its project sites from the Indian region. Most of these hits are by the users who use JBoss. But what about the size of contributers? What is the plan ahead for community engagement? Well that is the question I asked the panel. JBoss Heroes is project that is supposed to address this issue. Lets see when it is going to actually materialize. JBoss AS7, the latest release, is fully EE6 compliant, is very lightweight and is blazing fast with a boot time less that 3 seconds!

Infinispan

I don’t know why but there were just too many talks on Infinispan alone ( over 6 talks ! ). Inifinispan is a data grid platform based on the design of Amazon Dynamo ( has many implementation including Apache Cassandra ). Infinispan spans a very broad set of usecases. It can act as an in memory cache, persistent cache, distributed cache, replicated cache for high availablity. Also it provides plugins for different backends like Arjuna TM, BDB, JDB, JDBC etc.

Essentially it acts a key/value store. Its real power comes from its flexibility, which allows it to be adapted for many many use cases.

Becoming an Open Source developer

“When in fight, I start to fear that if I get hit by my oppnent, worse is going to happen, and I will lose.” Well, dont! Believe in how good things are going to be if you succeed. Always think that you are going to bring the opponent down no matter what. Never fear of failure. Fear the fear itself, and put your best. That is the mantra of successful Open Source developers, quite well explained by Dmitris in his talk Becoming an Open Source developer. Fight the problem until you solve it. Isn’t that straight forward 😉

Drools – Rules Engine and Complex Event Processing

In the talk “Declarative Rules” by Mark Proctor ( co-creator and founder of Drools ), he explained that Drools is Declarative Rules based engine. He demonstrated a simple game Wumpus World, that can be completely created using only rules. No other code required, which simplifies the whole process. Of the other things in his talk, there qere queries regarding Fuzzy logic support in Drools. Rules reduction or compaction process in Drools. Also rules processing on distributed and unstructured data, which is an inherently hard nut to crack.

In a subsequent talk “Demystifying Complex Event Processing” by Mark Proctor again, he explained how CEP works. How Complex Event Processing (CEP), Event Stream Processing (ESP) and Event Drive Architecture (EDA) are closely related. Drools Fusion is the CEP tool by JBoss. To learn more about Drools / CEP there are many books available: The Power of Events, Event Drive Architecture, Drools JBoss Rules 6.0 Developer’s Guide, JBoss Drools Business Rules

I am happy to have met a lot of people Jaikiran Pai, Sachin Patil, Ray Ploski, Radoslav Husar, Ales Justin, Dmitris Andreadis, and many other whom I only listened to 😉

However, I also missed a few things that would have made this conference even better in my opinion. There could have been an inclusion of activities like Hackathon, Bug Squadding or Workshop ( hands-on sessions ).

It has been a great learning experience. Keep them coming – the events – JUDCon 2012, you rock!

PS: I don’t see any slides nor the videos from JUDCon 2012 on their website yet. When are they coming?

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