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Polls: the Most Important JavaOne Track, and the Best Part of Java Conferences

Posted by editor on September 15, 2013 at 1:06 PM PDT

Since JavaOne is almost upon us, our recent polls have asked the community about the conference and about Java conferences in general. In the last-completed poll, the community was asked to identify the most important track at this year's JavaOne. Meanwhile, our current poll asks what the best part of Java conferences is.

A total of 304 votes were cast in the JavaOne tracks poll. The exact question and results were:

The most important track at JavaOne 2013 will be:

  • 30% (90 votes) - Client and Embedded Development with JavaFX
  • 7% (22 votes) - Core Java Platform
  • 3% (9 votes) - Edge Computing with Java in Embedded, Smart Card, and IoT Applications
  • 7% (20 votes) - Emerging Languages on the Java Virtual Machine
  • 16% (50 votes) - Securing Java
  • 4% (12 votes) - Java Development Tools and Techniques
  • 7% (20 votes) - Java EE Web Profile and Platform Technologies
  • 6% (17 votes) - Java Web Services and the Cloud
  • 21% (64 votes) - It's all important!

I wondered if it was going to end up being a mistake to add the "It's all important!" option -- would a lot of people just bail out from making a decision and select that choice? But, no, that didn't really happen. So, it's clear that voters took some time to think about their choices, and selected the track they really believe to be most important.

With eight tracks in the conference, the process of selecting a single "most important" track is a bit daunting. The work most Java developers do surely spans multiple of the JavaOne tracks. Still, the results of this (unscientific, the standard caveat) poll offer a few interesting items to note.

For example, the JavaFX track received a plurality of the votes -- not only beating "It's all important!", but considerably outdistancing (almost doubling) the second place track, "Securing Java." Among other things, this suggests that the tide is really beginning to turn for JavaFX. While in our recent JavaFX poll, 85% of the voters said they had not done any JavaFX development yet, it seems that as each JavaFX deficit is fixed (for example, adding support for additional operating systems, etc.), interest in JavaFX increases. Certainly, the world is changing so fast that it's difficult for a new client technology to enjoy massive gains in the share of applications that utilize it -- but, it is interesting that this track was the clear winner in this poll.

Security in Java has been so much in the news this year that it's not that surprising for "Securing Java" to receive a significant share of the vote.

It's a bit surprising to me that "Edge Computing with Java in Embedded, Smart Card, and IoT Applications" received the lowest share of the vote, given that embedded technology and the "Internet of Things" have received so much attention at recent conferences, including sub-conferences at both last year's JavaOne and this year's Jfokus. I have pretty much zero doubt that the Internet of Things is going to be totally transformative in the coming decades. I say this in part because it so reminds me of the work I did early in my career, in the late 1970s and early 1980s, when desktop computers were fairly new, and began to transform the world.

Also surprising to me is the relatively low vote total for "Java Web Services and the Cloud." But, perhaps there were just too many choices. And "It's all important!" was really a vote by 21% of the voters for all eight tracks...

New poll: What's best about Java conferences

Our current poll asks you to respond to: The best part of Java conferences is.... Voting will be open until Friday, September 20, just a couple days before JavaOne.

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-- Kevin Farnham (@kevin_farnham)