About software development for the enterprise. Focus on Java EE and more general Java platforms.
You'll read a lot about Conferences, Java User Groups, Java EE, Integration, AS7, WildFly, EAP and other technologies that hit my road.

Thursday, September 30, 2010

Visual Impressions from JavaONE, Oracle Open World and Develop 2010

10:20 Thursday, September 30, 2010 Posted by Markus Eisele
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As you might have guessed, I am into photography. At last a bit. I love taking pictures because of many reasons. One of them is the ability to focus. If you look through your lens you tend to see only parts of the whole and you are able to work out details that nobody else would have seen looking at the same scene. To make it short. I am not going to write a introduction about photography here. This is about sharing my visual impressions from the recent San Francisco trip. If you are willing to use one of them for your own blog posts or anything else, please ask! I am holding the copyright but am willing to share if you tell me a bit more about your plans in advance :) More impressions also via flickr.com/myfear

rush hour

Java SE 7, 8, 9 - The Road Ahead

06:57 Thursday, September 30, 2010 Posted by Markus Eisele
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Another JavaONE followup. After I blogged about what's going to happen with Java EE, it is time to recall what was said by Chief Architect, Java Platform Group, Mark Reinhold on the same general technical session on September 18.
After having the Java SE 6 release shipped in 2006 there had been several plans for Java SE 7. The last plan Sun was in charge of was to ship in 2010. This was before the Sun down. It’s been clear for some time that the most recent JDK 7 development schedule is unrealistic. The schedule was created over nine months ago, prior to the acquisition of Sun by Oracle. The post-acquisition integration process took longer than expected.

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Java EE.next - the cloud? Exalogic? Some thoughts. And fears.

08:18 Wednesday, September 29, 2010 Posted by Markus Eisele
The JavaONE announcements about upcoming Java EE versions were anything but exciting. Nothing too concrete and nothing comparable to a road map or plan like Mark Reinold's presented for Java SE. But Roberto Chinnici still did some slides about Java EE.next during the JavaONE general technical session on September 18.

The Future as proposed
Everything about the next Java EE version will be cloud support. To enable highly managed environments with scalability and elasticity and to make easy upgrades and easy patching possible. As he said, "Java EE actually has a lot to offer". A container model, exposed application services, injection and consumption of services for clients and it's already scalable up to very large clusters of instances and on top of this a comprehensive security model. This is a quite fair basis for the cloud enables Java EE.next. Java EE, however, was not designed to be operated in highly dynamic environments. Clouds tend to be elastic, and most of the current computing centers are not. But as Adam Bien stated before, "there is some work to be done with respect to dynamic discovery, self-healing, and dynamic load balancing." (Adam Bien, July 2009, tech article) And this is where the requirements for the next Java EE version will arise from:
- Tighter requirements for resource and state management
- Better isolation between applications
- Potential standard APIs for NRDBMS, caching, other
- Common management and monitoring interfaces
- Evolution, not revolution of the programming model
Beside this, there will be a couple of packaging improvements which were presented as "Better Packaging for the Cloud":
- Apps are versioned
- Multiple versions can coexist
- Must deal with data versioning, upgrades, etc.
- Need ability to specify Quality of Service properties
- Apps both expose and connect to services
A visualization of the direction in terms of architecture Java EE.next is going could look like this. The basis is a virtualization layer. Followed by state management for scalability and a number of services on top. What is called a "Java service" in the stack should be the equivalent to the existing containers. That's what runs your Java code. But there will be more services that will be formalized to provide a comprehensive platform.
The application itself will contain a number of code modules, which could be a rough equivalent to what there is today with WAR-, EAR- and JAR-files. To fulfill the requirements, the application also needs a definition of the data it uses with plans to migrate the data to be able to do upgrades. It needs security information. The application will actually grow to include more than the currently present code modules. One application would be sitting alongside other applications from an organization. And there is a need for a very strong isolation between the applications.And finally, the whole environment needs to be managed. So, there will certainly be some added features about management interfaces on both the application level, so you can manage your application and its data, but also, at the lower levels, so that platform providers can manage the infrastructure, and get it to scale accordingly.
Beside this high level stuff, Roberto also pointed out some more detailed plans:
- Modularity build on Java SE work
- explicit dependencies
- explicit versioning
- classloaders straightened out
- Web socket support
- standard JSON API
- HTML5 support
- NIO.2-based web container
- JPA Language support for properties
- JPA generated identity
- all triggered by the @Entity annotation
- Enhancements to the Criteria API, simpler queries

Who needs this? What does the community leaders think?
Seeing all this, makes me wonder, who really needs this cloud stuff. And I remembered a series, Arun Gupta did on his blog. In the Java EE 6 Feedback from Community series you can learn about how Java EE 6 is currently being used in production, development and deployment environments used within the community, and even feature requests for Java EE 7. I quote the answer to the last question from each participant:

Java EE 6 brought simplicity in complex enterprise applications, and made a significant move towards web-based projects. Indeed, the Java EE 6 specification is rather focused on the Web. While there are many usecases and real-world scenarios that have the Web as the most important client, I think there should be more attention for other clients, i.e. PDA, mobile phone, TV, JavaCard. Easy integration capabilities between those low-resource devices and high-end backend system will drive the adoption of Java EE.

From another point of view, more integration with the environment would be useful. For example, in a number of cases I would like to execute a specific EJB-call once CPU load is below 50%, or once disk usage is too high. I understand this is rather difficult to standardize in a non-platform dependent way.
(Johan Vos, QA#4: Java EE 6)

What I really miss in Java EE 6 is something similar to Spring Web Flow or Seam Page Flow. I hope that in Java EE 7 a new specification will come and standardize flow management (for JSF, of course, but something more general letting you manage different sorts of flows).

Batch processing is also something missing. Spring Batch is very good and defines well known principals such as jobs, steps and so one. With EJB 3.1 there is a new Timer Service (inspired from cron and as rich as Quartz). It's time to get a Batch processing specification that can be easily scheduled.

Security is also a difficult point. JAAS is too low level. Even if there are some improvements in the Servlet 3.0 API, there is still room to tight the platform together in terms of security.

Packaging could also be changed in Java EE 7. We talk a lot about OSGi these days. As a developer I found it too difficult, I would like the EE 7 platform to simplify the creation of bundles (OSGi or something different but compatible). I’m also hoping that Java SE 7 will become more modular. Modularity in Java SE 7 + OSGi packaging in EE 7 would be a great combination.

And I remember talking to Adam Bien about it, JMS hasn't changed for more than a decade, it should benefit from the novelties of the platform and get simpler.

In a word, I would like Java EE 7 to get richer (more specs), simpler (less code to write) and more integrated (security is one example).
(Antonio Goncalves, QA#3: Java EE 6)

I think the specifications are more or less feature complete. Of course I can think of a lot of improvements and I believe it's important to stay up to date and integrate new approaches.

If you look at JSF and the RI for example, I am still missing a lot of more complex components. I always find myself implementing one or two own in my projects. If you work for more restrictive enterprises, you are not always able to use the component suite of choice. If possible I still prefer to work with either RichFaces or PrimeFaces. Further on the cooperation between JSR 299 and JSR 330 should be clearer in general. The interaction between all JSRs should be taken to a next level. Clear but abstract guidelines
have to be specified, who is working with whom and how. If you look at the @ManagedBean annotation for example, you have three different ways of defining beans that are managed (JSR-314, JSR-316, JSR-299). That's not exactly what I would call intuitive ;)

Generally I would love to see the Managed Beans specification becoming the heart of enterprise java. Containers should belong to the past. Services should be available to POJOs and injected (and of course started) as needed. This could speed up the whole environment a lot and frees developers from having to implement interfaces. But the most important improvements would be administrative. Java EE 7 should put those pruning ideas forward and realy try to drop some old stuff. And finally it is time to
solve all those never-ending licensing discussions about the TCKs!
(myself, QA#2: Java EE 6)

Further simplification and unification of the APIs would be great. The synergies of JSF 2, EJB and CDI could be a lot more leveraged. A more natural use of java.util.concurrent in Java EE would be also interesting (e.g. injection of Executors). For all of my cases @Asynchronous worked perfectly, but Executors seem somehow to fascinate developers :-)

JPA 2.0 could be also extended with some useful features like support of resource injection (EntityManager is the most important) into JPA-entities. Its a controversial topic - but really important for projects. Also better support for stateful environments would be nice.

I would also expect a standardized JAX-RS client. Something like jersey, but with javax.ws.rs. prefix :-)

I’m really surprised, that actually no-one really complains over the really old JMS programming model (1997). This spec could be drastically simplified. A plain injection of a simplified queue or topic would be sufficient for > 80% of all cases.
(Adam Bien, QA#1: Java EE 6)

Sorry for the complete quotes (also to Arun, who did a great job doing this interviews, btw: why did you stop with it? Keep up!) but I found myself wondering, that we did not find the word "cloud" or managed services a single time. The problems the community leads are seeing, are of course more technical and detailed, than anything presented by Roberto. But the basic indication is that they don't necessarily have anything to do with running Java EE in the cloud. And yes, you can argue, that the overall platform architecture should not be driven by fine-grained technical requirements but by a long term direction. Right. You are right, but:

The fears
Or let's call them: my fears ;) are that we were witnesses of the first steps for the overall platform strategy drifting into a direction that is more product and vendor centric than aimed towards an open and multi vendor approach. Have you seen the probably biggest announcement at this years Open World? Oracle Exalogic? Also make sure, you read the first analysis of fellow ACE Director Simon. It basically is a highly optimized runtime environment for Oracle Fusion Middleware and the product itself was expected to be there way before we heard the announcement. Beside all this technical improvements it has a "Exalogic Elastic Cloud Software" layer in it's architecture. (Also see this post from last week.)
This is where you have to work hardest to establish what's under the covers. The "elastic cloud" software moniker is being used for a host of optimisations Oracle are building into WebLogic Server, JRockit (and presumably Hotspot), JRVE and the Oracle's optimized Linux kernel (unbreakable linux), JDBC and OVM.
Looking at the presented ideas for Java EE.next and the Exalogic I get a strange feeling. This does fit too well to be an "accident" at all. But I leave this up to your thoughts and I would be happy to hear about your fears.

To finish with more positiv thoughts. The Java EE 6 Panel "What do we do now?" gave a more detailed look and discussion about the future of Java EE than Roberto did on a high level in his keynote.

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Reviewing JavaONE, Oracle OpenWorld and Oracle Develop

11:39 Tuesday, September 28, 2010 Posted by Markus Eisele
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A few days after being back in Germany I finally found the time to do a review about this years mega Oracle and Java event which happened from September 19-23 in San Francisco.
As always, I already found a couple of things, that did not work for me. But in general it was simply awesome.
First of all, there are the plain numbers, that are impressive:
- 64,346 hotel room nights
- Over 20.00 man hours for setup
- 220 feet of screens in keynote hall
- 3,622 Oracle experts
- 59,000 lunches
- 141,000 cups of coffee
- 275 miles of network cable
- 1,073 switches
- 182,000 sq ft of tents
- 1,735 customer and partner speakers
- 1,394 product demos
- 56 Java Rockstars and roughly 70 ACE Directors
With about 41k attendees this is by far the largest developer event happening in the world. And it is impressive to see the masses floating around in Moscone and between the JavaONE hotels. Seeing all this, it seems impossible to create an event of that size. But they did it. And it simply was impressive.
What I liked the most (order does not necessarily corresponds to the importance)
- The ACED Briefing at the Oracle HQ
- The general technical sessions
- Meeting Java EE 6 and GlassFish people
- The ACED Dinner
- The Meet-And-Greet with the Java Champions
- Catching up with other "Twitter-Faces" in real life
- Meeting the OTN Team (Justin, Bob, Vikki, Lillian, Tod and many more :))
- The technical sessions from JavaONE
- Meeting Oracle PMs around my fav topics (OEPE, GF, WLS)
- The parties ;)
- Meeting User Groups people (ODTUG, DOAG, UKOUG)
- Having a good feeling about Java SE 7 -9 again ...

I am really looking forward to next years event. The kicks will hopefully be fixed than and I would love to see all the amazing people back on the session schedule, who missed this years JavaONE because of political trouble. Here are some more impressions taken during the conference.

Friday, September 24, 2010

Day 8: The bad and the ugly at oow, javaone10 and oracledevelop

04:56 Friday, September 24, 2010 Posted by Markus Eisele
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I am at SFO and enjoying the 45min free wifi. Great service. Still some time left until boarding. Time to do a WrapUp posting. It was nice being with all the folks at JavaOne, OracleDevelop and OpenWorld. I love meeting with all those guys I normally only have on the email or twitter or else. And I even managed to meet some German guys I normally don't see around that much being home.
But here is my list of things to change. Don't get it wrong. I liked the OpenWorld in the past. And this time this was not a big exception. But there are always things to improve on. Here is my list:
- the announcements made were not that surprising, as I am used to at OOW. I need stuff, that is surprising there. I need the show.
- the J1 location was a big fail. All the hotels together did not guarantee for a great event. It's the single location that makes this a true J1. Bring J1 back to Moscone in 2011!
- the session slots were not aligned. I had very big empty spaces in my schedule and very packed times. All this in combination with the need to move around that much made me miss many of the originally planned sessions.
- the food was like nothing I can describe in my little English words. Always the same. And not really tasty. Ok. I know that it's not easy to do this for >41k people but I still want to see it better next year.
- wifi was working most of the time. But this is always a point to improve on.
- OTN was located far off everything. The tent was a joke. Going downhill and pushed between those two row houses. All that police around. Dirt all the way. Anything but a nice and warm place, I would like to hang out longer.
- Google was missing. The lego pit was a joke. Bring those guys back in!
- I can't stand anybody talking about "Software and Hardware engineered to work together anymore"! It's not a slogan, it's a novel. I still like "Software.Hardware.Complete." that works for me somehow.
- If possible, can someone please tell Larry, that seeing this nice Amercas-Cup movie once is by far enough? I like Larry's Keynotes a lot. But seeing the same twice really was not worth it.
- And btw: I think one Keynote is by far enough. Let someone else do the Monday Keynote again.
- Treasure Island is an awesome place. I like it a lot. But please consider using more space again or cutting down the people for this event. It was too crowded and I hardly found a place to talk with a normal voice.
- Another think to think about is the registration process. I don't know if it has to be this complicated. What about giving a bag and a t-shirt to anybody. Nothing more nothing less. That would cut down administration, costs and frustration. With all of us.

Anyway. I explicitly skipped the good parts. I will catch up on this later. What are you thinking? Let me know.
Here are some impressions from todays after match, the "It's a Wrap" party.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Day 7: Meetings, Keynotes and Party

19:43 Thursday, September 23, 2010 Posted by Markus Eisele
The last real JavaOne/OpenWorld/OracleDevelop day for me. And it was completely busy. Meeting people. All over the day. Appointments. It was awesome. But exhausting. Especially if English is only your second language. Anyway, I meet a lot of wonderful people and it was a pleasure to catch up with all of them. After this heavy morning, we went to the famous Larry-Keynote. To be honest, I did not expect too much. But it was disappointing at all. Seeing the sailing intro the second time, hearing him talk about Exalogic, Exadata and stuff and listening to "Hardware and Software engineered to work together" totally made me sick. Thank god, I had Bjoerns Cam with me again and could spend some time taking closeups of him. Good for some slides. Sooner or later.
After that, we went to the appreciation event. Berlin, Black Eyed Peas (ExaPeas) and many more. We left before midnight. It was too crowded and we had some other complaints. Hotel bed was waiting and therefore, I was happy to finally fetch some sleep before I am heading back to Germany today. I am feeling a little bit of a cold coming up. Hopefully the a/c in the plane will not make it worser.
First conclusion about the last few days:
It was nice. Nice, to attend this big event. It's huge in plain numbers. More or less 41k people attending it. It was huge in terms of catching up with people I only meet online before. It was good to see Oracle being highly committed to Java and having plans and new directions for the great technology at hand.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Day 6: Working and Working

16:14 Wednesday, September 22, 2010 Posted by Markus Eisele
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Sleept longer today. Seems as if I get adjusted to the new timezone. Right in time for the flight back, which is'nt that far away. Great. Anyway. Yesterday was a mess. I had to work on some customer things in the morning and the real conference started around noon for me. I walked around The Zone and stopped by the OTN live broadcasting. Just in time to meet Ed Burns.
He is the SpecLead for JSF. It's not only fun to hear him talking about 2.x and what they are going to do. It's also fun to walk around with him. We introduced each other to different people around the Java Exhibition hall and had a nice talk. It's great to catch up with all the people in person! Really looking forward seeing him again at the DOAG Conference in November. It will be my pleasure to guide him, James and a few others around!
After that it was time for the JavaOne Technical General Session (Tuesday, 2:30 pm to 4:00 pm) with Roberto Chinnici and Mark Reinhold.
Mark gave a very entertaining overview about Java since the beginning and showed some details about whats floating around the internet these days and is know as Plan B. Oracle is commited to Java. They are delivering 7 and 8 in early 2011 and late 2012. Seems as if we are finally back on something we can call a release cycle.
After that it was Robertos stage. He talked about Java EE 6. To be honest .. stuff that is a year old now. But again, he surprised us with some future insights about Java EE. Arun Gupta joined the stage and showed his great Twitter Java EE 6 demo.
As you can see, I am one among the most active tweeters around #javaee6 and #glassfish! This was my second "on-stage" appearance, at last on the slides! Awesome! It's great to support this community!
The next thing to do was to attend fellow ACED Björn and Thorsten's Session about SOA and whatever. I promised to be there and it was quite entertaining. All this was followed by a great community evening where I had the pleasure to chat with Sebastian Meyen from the German Java-Magazin. That was nice.
Let's see what this day holds. I am looking forward to the appreciation event this evening. And of course some more sessions. There are still some people out there I have not met. Come on guys: Don't be shy: I want to meet you :)

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Day 5: Let's get the conference started

15:49 Tuesday, September 21, 2010 Posted by Markus Eisele
Being here for already five days, this was the first real conference day. And, to be honest, I am dead beaten after the last few days. So there were some sessions to attend, but the most obvious thing, we all were waiting for, was the JavaOne Keynote this evening. So, I went through the day and meet Justin, Björn, Sebastian and many others at the Zone, had some coffee and tried to get through the day. There were some great sessions out there and I enjoyed having them on my schedule.

The evening was promising. After the Java Champions and ACE Directors Meetup we immediate went to the JavaOne Keynote. Packed full and everybody excited to hear what is going to happen. As I said previously, this was announced to be the final statement from Oracle, that they are commited to Java and supportive.
After a more or less boring start with Intel, everything got exciting as Oracle Executive Vice President of Product Development Thomas Kurian entered the stage. Adam Messinger (JRockit), Mike Lehmann and others joined him to do live demos from what he was talking about. As I have heard, all demos on stage this year has to be live, so there was no video involved.
Everything got kickstarted by the JRockit Flight Recorder demonstration showcased JMX (MBean) as part of its analysis capability. Behind this was the message, that both JVMs are going to be merged into one. Nobody knows about the new name up to now, but it seems obvious, that there no longer will be a JRockit or even a Hotspot. HotRockit would be a great name :-)
Kurian said, that Oracle is committed to deliver Java 7 in 2011 and Java 8 in 2012. He also said that Oracle is committed to delivering the best JVM in the market. Right before the Keynote, Mark Reinhold announced that plan B will be the way to go.
All this was followed by a very impressing demonstration of what the "high-performance graphics engine" called Prism used with JavaFX is able to do. It renders 2D objects today, but will eventually support 3D objects. It will support new hardware Accelerated 2D and 3D Graphics Pipeline. This will be made available in open source via NetBeans.
Mike Lehmann was next do showcase both NetBeans and Eclipse with GlassFish. Nice presentation at all. And Mike is really commited to GlassFish. He was again wearing a GlassFish T-Shirt on stage. Something he already did prior to the merger at the Devoxx last year. Even if commitment is about more than wearing T-Shirts; In this case it's true. I guess Mike really loves what GF is capable of.
"We're really excited about Java and we're committed to giving you the world's best programming language, the world's most popular deployment platform, and the ability to deploy amazing clients in Java regardless of target platform. "
"The future of Java is not about Oracle or any one company. It is about you, the Java developers who create great applications with it."
(T.Kurian, JavaOne Keynote 20.09.10)

Right after the keynote, I was torn to the side. There was a big surprise waiting. A meet-and-greet with Apollo Ohno. He is an American short track speed skating competitor and an eight-time medalist (two gold, two silver, four bronze) in the Winter Olympics. He is the most decorated American Winter Olympic athlete of all time.

This was directly followed by the OTN party in the Yerba Buena Gardens. Thanks Sheeri for the nice time! I realy enjoyed it. Love uncomplicated people :)

Monday, September 20, 2010

BREAKING: Exalogic Maschine

15:54 Monday, September 20, 2010 Posted by Markus Eisele
Oracle Exalogic Elastic Cloud is the world's first and only integrated middleware machine—a combined hardware and software stack optimized for running JVMs. One of the parts we know about since a few days. And we all were waiting for the official announcement from Larry yesterday. And here is how it looks like.

The new box is positioned next to the original Marvel suites from Ironman 2. This is awesome. But as you might have guessed, the suites look much smaller than in the movie :)
You can find more information about Exalogic on the new official website. At the moment there is only a WebLogic server on top of the stack. But at the end of the day, this is simply a box running Oracle Unbreakable Linux. So you should even be able to run GlassFish on it. Even if it does not contain all the performance improvements done for WebLogic.

Day 4: GlassFish Community Event and ACE Directors Dinner

15:25 Monday, September 20, 2010 Posted by Markus Eisele
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Wow. Up after 6 hours of sleep again. Seems as if I have to catch up on sleep back in Germany. This is really tough. Anyway, it's worth it. After the more or less successful check in I was heading to the GlassFish Community Event.
Roughly 150 people there. Awesome to see all of the in one place. I ran into Alexis, Eduardo, John, Mike, Adam, Arun and many more. Thank you guys for finally meeting you! It was awesome. I even was mentioned on one of their slides: comment "he's giving us hard times" :) Lol. Loved it! It's a pleasure to help pushing things forward!
Both John and Alexis presented about the roadmap and future plans. We even got something like a release date for the 3.1 (in inches at all :)) And everything sounds plausible. No big news at all. Everything around the GlassFish ecosystem is transparent and available already since some time. So, I did not expect any big surprises. It was nice to see Alexis doing some Screencasts on 3.1 features.
The Oracle peers and managers were on site, too. Mostly in the background. I have met Mike a few days ago. Still missing Adam Leftik who is the PM for GlassFish together with John Clingan. But I'll probably get a chance to catch up with him later the week.

Too sad, that I had to leave before the party. Yesterday we had an invitation to the annual ACE Dinner. This time, we rocked the bay. Leaving on a boat from pier 40 .. driving around all the way down to the golden gate and back. Meanwhile I was taking pictures, having a great dinner, some drinks and nice chats with people I have seen a year ago for the last time. Thanks Bob for the great evening! I always enjoy talking about Architecture with you! And a big Thank you to Vikki, Lillian and Justin! You are doing an incredible job caring for us weird ACEs :)

Today will be the first day full of sessions. Starting with a JDK talk, a little bit of product roadmap, onto JRockit and Virtualization visiting some JPA content in between. And finally the Java SE platform BOF and a WebLogic upcomming feature session. A packed day for me. Hopefully I will be able to get from one session to the other in time. Being at the hilton somehow feels disconnected to OpenWorld and the "big party" things. And having to go all to Nikko, Parc 55 and Hilton for some of the sessions really fragments the whole conference a lot. But let's see how all this is working out today.

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Day 3 + day 4 part one: time for mental preparation and registration

22:46 Sunday, September 19, 2010 Posted by Markus Eisele
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The wifi at the hilton is expensive (if you can not use the free oracle wifi beeing up in the towers) and therefore here is the post about yesterday.
There was no official program yesterday at all. All ACED spread around and did their things. I teamed up with Bjoern and we drove around to the south. Down to Gilroy, CA and back via Santa Cruz using the 1 towards San Francisco again. Took some great pictures, but they are all still on the cam. So you have to stay tuned for more picture updates.

After waking up quite comfortable at 6 am it was the early morning DOAG breakfast that kicked-off the day. Right after we went to the registration to get our badges. Nice idea. After standing in the line for a few minutes, we got them. Without any ribbons. And nobody could tell me, which conference parts I am allowed to attend now. 20 minutes later I had the J1 ribbon and feeling a little bit more comfortable. Even if nobody was able to guarantee that I would be able to access all sessions. Right. Will work. I believe it. Next was to pick up the conference "materials". Namely a bag and a t-shirt. That's what I got last year. Not today. "Only" got my ribbon for the appreciation event. Nothing more, nothing less. Great. Even if I know, that I have the conference packages for J1 and OracleDevelop and OpenWorld, I did not even got a shitty bag. This was time for the German in me.  It took me nearly two hours to find out, that Sandra is in charge of all the checkin stuff. And I found her. Talked to her. And she checked.... checked ... checked ... I stood there for about an hour while she was away with my name tag. That was scary. After another 20 minutes, I had it back. Together with a nice J1 t-shirt and a bag :) Thanks Sandra for taking care of it. Anyway, I believe that the new "material-policy" is going to bring more trouble. I mean ... I am actually wearing this stuff. And it has Oracle printed all over ... and the passes are not that cheap. Why the hell don't you strip this down to a shirt and a bag for everybody and finish all this confusion ...
The whole time schedule for the morning was over. A very short visit to the golden gate bridge was everything we could do, before the official part starts.

Now I am sitting next to Mike van Alst and we are waiting for the next things to come. On our list for today:
The GlassFish community meeting in roughly one hour. After that, back to the Zone and watching the T.Kurian Keynote. After that bus to the piers and a nice evening boat tour together with all the other ACEs. More about this to come. I already asked Björn for his 7D again and brought my 50mm 1:1,8 so, that I can take some more impressions for you. Thanks for reading. Hot news live during the Keynote via twitter.

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Day 2: ACED Briefing and going to SFO

06:42 Saturday, September 18, 2010 Posted by Markus Eisele
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Second day in the states. Awake, as usual around 4 am. Not too comfortable. But this will get better over time. Today we had the second day of the annual ACE Directors briefing. Even if I would love to write about the actual contents and outlooks, we are not allowed to.
Anyway. To make this more complete and do a follow-up on yesterdays post, I also share the speakers and topics today:
- Vince Casarez, VP Product Management
- Roel Stalman, Vice President Product Management, Enterprise Content Management
- Wim Coekaerts, Senior VP, Linux and Virtualization Engineering
- Mark Townsend, VP Product Management, DB
- David Peake, Principle Product Manager, APAX
- Barb Lundhild, X-Team Manager, EXADATA

From a technologically point this really was not my day. Far too much DB stuff. I enjoyed Wim. He is awesome. And I have never seen a Senior VP before. He did a quite famous quote after we asked him, if he is the classical "manager" type. I tried to remember it, but ended up to write down something I believe he said:
Oracle management is very technical all the way up to Larry. That's the way it should be....
(free after W. Coekaerts, ACED Briefing, 18.09.10)
After the briefing and some internal ACE stuff, we had a great wrap up and finally entered the bus to move over to SFO. We arrived at the Hilton one hour later. And here we are. Lot's of rooms here. First things already in place for JavaOne and you can feel the excitement rising.
Here are some impressions from this evening to get you into the mood for Sunday :) If you want to see more, have a look at my flickr.com/myfear photostream. It will get updated more frequently.
Need to express a very big THANK YOU to Björn, who was so kind letting me walk around with his new Canon 7D! Awesome toy .. I would love to have one ...

Friday, September 17, 2010

Day 1: ACED Briefing and the future of Java

02:10 Friday, September 17, 2010 Posted by Markus Eisele
Today was the first part of the annual ACE Director briefing at Oracle. An event that I was waiting for since some time now.
The following people gave some short slots on their topics. As usual, this is too early to talk about the content, as most of this is still confidential (until it gets officially announced at either OOW or J1). But I would like to take the chance to show you some impressions, faces and names behind the technologies you are probably using each day.
- Thomas Kurian (Executive VP, Product Development, FMW)
- Mike Lehmann (Senior Director, Product Management, FMW)
- Param Sigh (Senior Director, Product Management, Java ME)
- Greg Stachnick (Senior Director, Product Management, OEPE)
- Rohit Gupta (Senior Director, Prodcut Management)
- Demed L'Her (Director Product Management)
- Ted Farell (Chief Architect and Senior VP)
- Danny Coward (Evangelist, Java SE)
- Markus Zirn (VP, Product Management, FMW4Apps)

Basic wrap up: We are heading to a very hot week. There are some big announcements to be made. Some of them have been expected since some time. Others are completely new. The best thing is, that you get all the facts together in one place and don't have to look around to get them.
To me personally the day mostly stood under the impression of very passionate VP's talking about their technology.
And that is Java! We heard some very honest words about topics like Google, OpenSource, JCP and the future of Java. And there is one single thing I can tell you: Oracle is on the good side of the force.
You probably have seen lot's of postings, articles, press releases where people share their fears about Java's future. I have read them all. I worked on some. I've had this fears, too. They vanished away. Today. You get the chance to change your mind with some of the greatest keynotes coming up for Java One and Open World. Even if you don't believe the words you will hear.
Oracle is different to Sun. You will have to adjust your senses to this. They don't use energy on responding to things in public. They actually work on things and move forward.

Expect a stunning T.Kurian Java One Keynote (S319179):
In this opening JavaOne keynote Thomas Kurian, will share Oracle's vision for strengthened investment and innovation in Java and describe how Java will continue to grow as the most powerful, scalable, secure, and open platform for the global developer community.

"After my keynote, there is no longer any confusion about the Java feature road-map"
(T.Kurian, 16.09.10 ACED Briefing)

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Day 0: OpenWorld, Oracle Develop and JavaOne.

15:14 Thursday, September 16, 2010 Posted by Markus Eisele
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Ok. I finally managed to get here. Starting around 4pm in MUC I arrived at SFO 7:00pm local time after a short and entertaining 12h flight yesterday. The shuttle pickup worked perfectly. Thanks to Vikki and Lillian for organizing all this so perfectly. The night was not too bad, too. Up at 4am. Last year was worser ;) Seems as if you get used to jetlag.

Today is the first day of the anual ACE Director briefing at the Oracle Headquarter. As usual I expect that we will not be able to blog too much about the things we hear and see there, but I am looking forward meeting the fellow aces and talk with long missed Oracle people.

Being up early has it's good parts. I was able to setup my annual OpenWorld flickr photoset. If you like to grap some impressions, take a look.

bringing the teees home

If you want to follow my activities it's best to follow me on twitter.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

We all are the future of Java! :)

10:10 Wednesday, September 15, 2010 Posted by Markus Eisele
You have probably already seen the great Java One page, refering to the outstanding developers who are passionate about Java technology and the Java community. They share their insights about the future of Java and why they're excited about attending JavaOne 2010.
To be honest: I don't know all of them. In fact, I only know two :) But those two guys are outstanding. And I am not going to compare myself to them in any way. But I believe that the future of Java is not only about "outstanding developers" but about the whole community. Starting with the "new to Java" ones and the ones simply using the technology day after day.

And this is nothing to feel bad about. Even if you are not outstanding or not giving a session at the biggest Java event out there you are important and part of Java's future. But keep in mind, that the Java Community Leaders and Oracle as the new owner have to know what you are doing, wanting, missing. If you keep your thoughts for yourself, nothing will change. Looking somehow jealously at the named "outstanding" ones? Don't! Look at it like this: They are the ones, Oracle is listening to. And I know, that they care about YOU and your thoughts about their favorite programming language and most of them will stand up and fight, if something is going terribly wrong with the language or the ecosystem.
If you have concerns of ideas: Let them know. And look around for all the others out there, able and willing to support you. There are:
- the Java Champions
- the ACEs and ACE Directors
- the members of your favorite open source product (e.g. GlassFish)
- Oracle Technology Network Team (web/twitter)

And don't be shy. Make comments on their blogs, mailinglists, twitter, drop them an email, speak up at their sessions if you are luckily attending Java One!
For those attending: have a save travel! Hope to meet one or the other out there!

Monday, September 6, 2010

Hyphen usage in package names

11:06 Monday, September 6, 2010 Posted by Markus Eisele
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As always, the simple things in live make everything complicated. A co-worker came up with this and I would like to answer the question and point you to some additional links.
Do we have a prefered way about our Java package names? Do we use the short:
- de.xxxx.* or the long form
- com.xxxx-xxxx.* ?

The technical answer
Trivial? Not necessarily. The actuall question is hidden. If you simply look at the semantics you would tend to choose the "short form" (the de.xxx). But let's look at the syntactic first.
The true question is: Does the Java Language Specification (jls) allows hyphen (dashes) in package names? A quick look into 7.7 Unique Package Names tells us the following about package names in general
You form a unique package name by first having (or belonging to an organization that has) an Internet domain name, such as sun.com. You then reverse this name, component by component, to obtain, in this example, com.sun, and use this as a prefix for your package names, using a convention developed within your organization to further administer package names.
If the domain name contains a hyphen, or any other special character not allowed in an identifier (§3.8), convert it into an underscore.
(Source: jls, 3rd edition)
Now you have to look at 3.8 Identifiers to find out about "special characters".
An identifier is an unlimited-length sequence of Java letters and Java digits, the first of which must be a Java letter.
The Java letters include uppercase and lowercase ASCII Latin letters A-Z (\u0041-\u005a), and a-z (\u0061-\u007a), and, for historical reasons, the ASCII underscore (_, or \u005f) and dollar sign ($, or \u0024).
You are right, the simple answer is: You are NOT allowed to use the hypen in package names. If you have a unique package name build from a domainname containing a hyphen you have to translate it to the underscore.

For the above example this will look like:
- com.xxxx_xxxx.*

The developer answer
Reading all this stuff, this somehow feels outdated. If you look at the massive amount of registered domain names it is most likely that the hyphen will more and more become a part of our namespace. Even if it technically does not make a big difference if you use a "-" or a "_" there are some more considerations:
- You have to hit an additional key "shift" if you want to access the hyphen.
- It simply does not correspond with the domain name.
- It looks like a typo.
- The _ has to be "translated" to get the real domain name

Related to the concrete question there are some more conciderations:
- The de.xxx obviously is shorter
- The com.xxx sounds more international

The answer to the question is: Use the de.xxxx! It is shorter and correct. If any of the marketing guys is forcing you to pick the second option: resist! It is longer, makes developing harder and simply does not feel right. At last to me.
You have your own thoughts about this. Glad to hear it.

Friday, September 3, 2010

New German Java magazin - Java Aktuell available!

12:35 Friday, September 3, 2010 Posted by Markus Eisele
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It's here! The new magazin (Java Aktuell) from the german iJUG (Interessenverbund der Java User Groups e.V.).
The iJUG was foundet right after the Sun/Oracle merger. Some of the most powerfull German Java User Groups (JUG) and the German Oracle Users Group (DOAG) decided to establish the new association of the Java User Groups e.V. (iJUG). The new magazin is the quarterly voice of the iJUG. More (german) information can be found on the iJUG website.

It is my pleasure to contribute a short article (in german) about "Oracle and the Future of Java".

Thursday, September 2, 2010

See me, live! DOAG Special Interest Group Java, 09.09.10, Munich

11:36 Thursday, September 2, 2010 Posted by Markus Eisele
Short notice: If you like to meet me and the following speakers:
Ralph Soika (IMIXS GmbH), Michael Bräuer (Oracle), Frank Schwarz (buschmais GbR), Kai Wähner (MaibornWolff et al GmbH)and Adam Bien,
you are invited to register at the DOAG SIG Java - Java Enterprise Edition 6 which will happen at 09.09.10 in the Victor's Residenz-Hotel Munich.
This is a german speaking event. Find more details at the DOAG event page.

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Mobile GlassFish Admin GUI with HTML 5 and the iPad

08:27 Wednesday, September 1, 2010 Posted by Markus Eisele
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You know, that I am "playing" around with the iPad recently. One part of the game is to look for suitable UI frameworks that assist you building modern "native looking" webapps for the iPad. There are some promissing approaches out there and the one that is most complete and best looking is Sencha Touch. Sencha Touch allows you to develop web apps that look and feel native on WebKit based browsers and touchscreen devices.
I will probably blog about the more technical findings I had working with some of the mentioned frameworks but this post is dedicated to a concrete usecase for mobile UIs. If you have read my iPad for Business? posts (part 1 | part 2) you already know, that the device is hot and nearly every company is designing their personal mobile usecase. But what about product UIs?
Have you seen any of the mature Java application server admin UIs thinking about or doing prototyping on this? Neither did I. But why not? Is this not needed?
Here is how a mobile UI for the latest GlassFish could look like. For now this is only a simple UI prototype without any further functionality, designed to make you want it :) The native gesture driven approach for touch devices would optimize the usability a lot. But beside this basic benefit you could also think about other szenarios. The following represent what I might find usefull.

Admins in datacenters
I could image admins walking around in the datacenter and connecting their mobiles to the server instance they are standing in front of. This could save time for walking to the next terminal or even be good for the health because they do no longer need to carry their heavy notebooks around.

Load test specialists
Load and stress tests typically run for longer times. Very often they have to run outside of the normal office hours. The mobile UI gives a very lightweight access to all relevant domain data that could be of interest to those people.

And last but not least for the developers. They could grap one of those fancy desktop stands and have their admin UI always on beside their screen. This could speed up development if you do not have to switch windows.

If you have comments, ideas, other cases, let me know. I would love to see a mobile UI version in one of the next GF or even the WLS ;)