Skip to main content Time to Grow Again (with Your Help)!

Posted by editor on February 1, 2010 at 10:36 PM PST

Now that the Oracle acquisition of Sun Microsystems is complete, is seeking new growth for our community: bloggers and article authors, along with people who want to participate in our communities and projects. The uncertainty that has existed for virtually the entirety of my tenure as editor has now reached an initial resolution.

By "initial" I mean that the end of the acquisition uncertainty means today is a new day. At, post-acquisition, we are in "business as usual" mode. Except, the meaning of "business as usual" now takes on a new perspective. I had no idea what the plan for was going to be, post-acquisition. It's clear now that Oracle was working very hard all these past nine months, analyzing their purchase, evaluating what the best first steps would be. But none of that could be conveyed to anyone in public; nor, as you might expect, to an O'Reilly person working on a contract with Sun as editor!

So, where do we stand today at What does "business as usual" mean for any enterprise, whether commercial, or an open source project, or an online technology community? It means it's time to grow! That's "business as usual" for virtually any enterprise (including my garden, for which I ordered seeds last night). Growth is natural.

It's time to grow again, really, for -- since the too many months of uncertainty without doubt took a toll on our community, just as it took a toll on the sales of Sun products, as customers wondered about Oracle's ultimate level of commitment to specific areas as the "quiet time" dragged on and on... Well, in case you haven't heard, the story is having a pretty happy ending/beginning, since Oracle + Sun are saying loudly: We're hiring! As I noted in a tweet during last week's Oracle + Sun Strategy Session, those two words are "the perfect statement for immediately building confidence among both customers and employees."

Now, I can't say that we're "hiring" at But, if you've ever considered joining our community, if perhaps you've been holding back because you had doubts about our viability going forward -- well, now's the time to get involved! From what I'm hearing, we are quite viable going forward. Here are a couple ways you can participate, along with some reasons for choosing to do it here on

Blogging on

There are many places where software engineers and architects can blog. But, if your focus is on Java/JVM related technologies, Java open source projects, the debate over the future of Java and the JDK -- what better place to make your blog's home than Post-acquisition, we remain an independent voice in the Java/JVM technology realm. It's almost as if nothing has happened, except that we now have improved financial backing!

There are no changes in blogging policy -- I'm still the dictator ;-) ... No, actually, our entire community rules and polices itself. Not that a single censure has been proposed to me during my reign as editor. People who blog at know why we're here, and we blog accordingly -- and very openly, too!

Seriously, consider joining us if the main topic of your blogging is Java-related technologies. We may not have the fanciest blogging infrastructure, but you'll be part of a Java-centric community that I believe has a very bright future ahead of it. Your blog can be part of that future!

If you'd like to start a blog, contact me!

Become a author

Maybe you don't like writing frequently, but you're working on some very interesting technology, and you'd like to share it with the broader Java community. Maybe you've come up with a technique that solves a troublesome problem you know many developers have encountered. Maybe you can provide clues as to how to solve a problem through presenting and discussing a few code snippets? Or, maybe you do blog a lot, but you sometimes want to pull together a broader, more formal presentation, that wholeheartedly demonstrates your findings.

If any of these situations describes you, then you should consider writing a article. Whether the solution you have in mind occupies 500 words or 4500 words, if it's something that may well be valuable for developers for some years hence, composing it into a article is a great way to get it into the public record, on a site that garners a lot of respect and recognition within the Java community. Ideally, you'll be writing about something that's new enough that there isn't much documentation available at this point. You want your article to be among the first that provide a solution to the specific problem you're addressing.

Ah! (or arggh!) at this moment I want so much to quote my ultimate boss Tim O'Reilly's "Three F's of Publishing" dictum -- but I daren't do it, since is a family-friendly site. Contact me if you want to hear Tim's "Three F's of Publishing" statement in private. I think he's right about it! My wife and I applied the dictum when we wrote our MySpace book several years ago. It worked!

Anyway, back to writing an article for of course, a technology article is a more formal form of composition than a blog post is. You'll want to spend the necessary time to make sure your presentation is well ordered, make sure your sentences, paragraphs, and code snippets clearly convey what you intend to say to your developer audience.

But prior article writing experience is not required! I'm here to assist you, most definitely, with suggestions for focus, slant, subtopics to mention to broaden the audience that will find your article of interest, and basic English language editing where needed (I was an English major in college, along with Physics -- they didn't have software engineering degrees back then, in the mid-1970s!).

So.. think about what you're working on, what you're interested in, within the scope of Java, the JVM, Java tools, Java open source projects, etc. Let me know if you have an article idea! From personal experience, I can tell you that writing articles for prominent technology sites looks great on your resume. Who can't use that right now, and going forward?

Until later...

Well.. I'm out of time for now. It's time to post Tuesday's front page. I do that late at night my time (Eastern US) so that my friends in Asia get to see the new home page (absent my blog, which I finalize in the morning my time) during their lunch break, and my European friends get to see it early in their morning.

More looking ahead for soon to come! Consider being a part of it, OK?

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-- Kevin Farnham
O'Reilly Media
Twitter: @kevin_farnham

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