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Up all night

Posted by daniel on June 19, 2003 at 6:50 AM PDT

Just outside of Detroit, just after midnight, this year's MacHack conference began. The conference traditionally begins Wednesday at midnight and continues for the next 72 hours with coffee and code, some sessions here and there, and a lot of conversation and collaboration. The saying here is "sleep is for the weak". Suffice it to say, for the next few days my writing will further degrade as sleep deprivation takes its toll.

This year's keynote speaker was Ken Arnold. Barefoot, as always, Ken discussed lessons in design, and offered his thoughts on distributed programming. As always, I popped open my PowerBook to take notes. iTunes music was streaming everywhere. You could open up iTunes and find music on other attendees' laptops, connect to it, and listen to it without any configuration.

Shared music might be a trivial example of dynamic collaboration -- but what about document authoring. My neighbor urged me to use Hydra for note taking. I created a document and enabled sharing. Soon, people I'd never met were helping me take notes on the keynote. Hydra allows multiple authors to each add to, delete from, or otherwise edit the same document at the same time. I would be adding a line while watching someone else commenting on Arnold's last slide. Given Arnold's reputation and experience in distributed computing, it was an appropriate tool to use. As more people are connected in more ways, we need to let our ideas of how a computer works change with it.

In today's featured Weblogs James Gosling classifies programming tasks in "Mud slinging and diamond cutting". Glenn Vanderburg continues to work his way through his backlog of JavaOne notes in "Collaboration Software" (and a great demo)." Ken Arnold blogs just before his keynote address in "MacHack" and James Duncan Davidson blogs about a conversation he had with the keynote speaker in "Ken Arnold Critiques Ant". Remember to visit the weblogs homepage for a complete list of weblogs.

In Also Today, we highlight the telescope project. Connect your "go-to" telescope to your computer and accurately navigate the sky. Kathy Sierra and Bert Bates discuss their unorthodox writing and teaching style in an interview with ONJava editor chromatic.

Steve Mallett, the Java Today news editor has gathered the following Java Today News Headlines: "CDC 1.1 Skips a Beat; Four Sun JSRs Rejected", "XP founder,Kent Beck, "The First Annual Defcon Wi-fi Shootout", "Sun launches ad campaign highlighting IBM's licensing dispute with SCO Group", "Senator takes aim at illegal downloads", "ScheduleWorld 1.0 released" & "Jini Technology Starter Kit v2.0 Released". Steve notes that the last two stories came from within java.net.