Guess you must be wondering what Afterdark was like? It was nice, although less spectacular than I hoped for. The Mythbusters didn’t do any insane things, like blowing up cement trucks. That was a pity. The t-shirt hurling compo was fun though with a winning rocket launcher contraption that the army will be jealous off 😉 Paul caught a t-shirt, as always limited edition James Gosling exclusive.
The all-female AC/DShe band rocked! It was the real AC/DC stuff, only without beards, moustaches and a bunch of sweaty old men high on coke. They were impersonated by a couple of awesome girls that performed a great rock and roll show! My muscles still hurt and I can’t get my fingers out of the pitch fork figure, oi! 😉
All in all the Afterdark will make it to my top 5 favorite things of this year’s conference. As do:
- Gavin King’s sneakers 😉
- The James Gosling interview, ofcourse!
- My (NL-JUG) business card making it onto Mary’s bedstand 😉
- Scott McNeally’s keynote speech
Speaking of which…Scott was up during today’s keynote. He announced himself as the warmup for the James Gosling toy show. His first words when on stage were: “How is it going, Jonathan?” Not being a CEO for Sun anymore had both its disadvantages and good things. He continued joking about everyone in the Sun executive group trying to grow a ponytail now 😉 and he did a top 10 best things about not being CEO that was simply hilarious. Then he also talked about some serious stuff: bridging the digital divide and making security first class business. James Gosling took over and indeed the toy started. It featured cool demos of the slotcar racing track, GE Medical software and the Swing + 2D to mobile port (JSR-209). Unfortunately the demo gods were a little grumpy that Charles Beckham succeeded his demo earlier this week, so this time they decided to ruin the new NetBeans refactoring tool demo. Funny though.
As we’re reaching the end of the conference now attendence drops dramatically. Too bad, because there are some nice sessions and replays lined up for the Friday afternoon. A lot of EJB 3.0 stuff. Probably people are already heading home, or planned to do some shopping before leaving the city. In fact I couldn’t stay till the very end either. I promised to author a short article for Java Magazine, a Dutch Java developer’s magazine. Deadline is today, so I should not spend too much time writing this blog entry 😉
Looking back at 4 days of technical content, it strikes me that there are actually lots of 101-style sessions and less expert stuff. Maybe that is also what fits the attendees most. While I’ve been talking to and observing lots of people I think you can tell that most of them are programming Java for a while, but lack the possibility of Java education, which is what they’re here for. I’m not sure whether this is totally true, but that explains it though. Right next to education, the single best thing of a conference like this is inspiration. To me, that is the most important part of attending JavaOne. Every session that I attended, whether good, bad, or totally ugly, inspired me in some way. Some nice ideas were born and I’m pretty sure that I will execute several of them in the time ahead. With that I will conclude my coverage of the conference. Thank you JavaOne 2006 for being such a source of inspiration!