Yes, it’s that time of the year again. I’m spending this weekend at No Fluff Just Stuff to improve myself. When I reviewed the speakers and topics for this year, I’ll be honest, I was disappointed. I’ve been going to the show now for the past four years and learn something new every time. However, over the past four years, the topics haven’t changed much. Groovy, check. Some form of code smell talk. Yup. GWT and JSF, got those too. But those topics have all been there for the past four years. The really only new topic for this year was a track on semantic web. And I’ll be honest, I’m even more disappointed about that track (albeit for a different reason). The reason for that disappointment is because I know where that track came from. We were doing semantic web when I was at Sears over two years ago. Yes, we were writing SPARQL, we were using OWL, etc. Back then some of my coworkers thought it would be cool to hear someone talk about those topics. I tried to convince them that instead of listening to others, we have the experience and we should be the ones up there doing the talking. Alas, that entire group will be in attendance of a talk that they should have been giving last year instead of someone else doing it this year.
In any case, yesterday I went to talks by two legends: Ted Neward and Brian Goetz. I’m sure I don’t need to give either any form of introduction (and if I do, leave my blog now, go do some Googling, learn a bit and come back ;) ). I listened to Brian talk about concurrency and memory models and I heard Ted talk about classloaders and give the keynote called Iconoclasm. I’ll spare you reading many paragraphs. They were all excellent. When you go to a Brian Goetz talk, it’s like being back in college. You have the expert on concurrency and how Java works at a low level geeking out on topics he loves. Even though his topics cover hard stuff, he does them with passion. Ted is just an all around cool guy who is a great speaker and also incredibly knowledgable about languages in general (He also does Microsoft stuff…no one’s perfect). Overall, I was pleased with the sessions yesterday.
With that being said, looking ahead to today, I’m honestly lost. After going through the slides for some talks with potential, they seem to have less potential. We’ll see what happens. As always, let’s hear from you! Questions about sessions or speakers, let me know in the comments!