A day and a half at JavaOne 2007 and I haven't yet picked up as to what's the most happening technology this year. While a couple of years back it was SOA, last year was Ajax. This year there doesn't seem to an obvious choice.
The Sun General Session yesterday included details about the Open sourcing of Java. Rich Green and later Jonathan Schwartz talked about where OpenJDK stands today, the GPL2 license being used and where Java goes from here. Along with Scott Mcnealy and a representative from the UN, the four later talked about how technology could and should be used to make it a better world. Good to see mega companies like Sun demonstrate social responsibility.
Green later announced a new language developed by Sun that seems to challenge established Ajax techniques and Flash in the Rich Internet Applications space. JavaFX Script is what it is called, and it also has a mobile edition meant to provide a rich user experience on mobile devices. Haven't as yet caught specifics of the new language but the audience did not seem to share the enthusiasm of the Sun guys.
A new language in the already crowded scripting and dynamic language space is however bound to make developers life difficult as apart from well known options like JRuby and Groovy you also now have to look at JavaFX Script. One wonders if the scripting mania has now peaked and will go down from here or if scripting languages will soon start challenging Java. Looking at the best seller books for yesterday Groovy and Grails, two topics I have been writing and speaking about regularly seem to be getting more attention. I attended a Groovy session from the project leads and most questions that followed the session were not about the Groovy language as such but about how it was different from other scripting languages and which companies were backing Groovy.
One of the important reasons for the popularity of Rails has been the hype created by the creator of Rails by making statements like Java should retire form web apps. I find it surprising that other scripting language promoters consistently stay away from saying that they wish to replace the Java language one day and just utilize the Java platform.
Day 2 morning began with the Oracle general session. Thomas Kurien talked about creating Ajax ready mashups easily and also about new Oracle developments in the SOA and SCA space. Oracle now today released a preview of JDeveloper 11g. Looking forward to trying it out.
The exhibit area has all the usual presenters and some new ones. As always the most interest is in the free bags, tshirts, coffee and other gifts.
* JavaOne 2004. SOA What?
* JavaOne 2006 Java EE 5, Seam, the rise of NetBeans and more
* Grails is a breath of fresh air for Java developers
* Groovy bridges the scripting and the enterprise Java worlds