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Posted by editor on December 20, 2007 at 7:55 AM PST

Maybe conference reviewers shouldn't also be speakers

Here's one to think about: if you're reviewing sessions for a conference, should you be allowed to submit sessions of your own to that same conference? On the one hand, this seems like an arbitrary restriction, and one that would harm the conference: you're apt to lose either good sessions or good reviewers if the people who know what they're talking about can't participate in one role or the other.

But on the other hand, being part of the review committee gives would-be speakers an advantage over others. Even if they don't vote on their own proposals, someone wearing two hats may know the other reviewers and have a chance to lobby them. When I was on this year's OSCON committee, I gave a low rating and pretty harsh review to a talk whose submitter was later added to the committee, and who was therefore able to see my comments. I didn't change my vote or comments -- I wouldn't want to say things behind colleagues' backs that I wouldn't say to their face -- but still, would I have graded it differently if I knew the submitter was or would later be a committee member?

Cay Horstmann faced a nearly identical issue recently, in reviewing JavaOne proposals:

I am a reviewer for Java One. I have about 350 project proposals to plow through and not enough time to give each of them justice.

One submitter proposed a talk on "Doing your own language". The outline talked about parsing, abstract syntax trees, and generating code. I flippantly commented "A DSL is not a DYOL. You use a DSL precisely because you DON'T want to write another parser."

Of course, what I had in mind was the recent trend of embedding DSLs in programming languages such as Groovy and Scala. (See this blog for Groovy.)

The submitter happened to be a reviewer in another Java One track, so he was able to see my comment, and he was not happy. He emailed me: "I feel strongly that this is mistaken. Most DSL's originate with domain experts, who become weary of using general-purpose languages to work within their domain concepts and patterns. Many of us are the beneficiaries of such efforts, but DSL's don't spring forth from nothingness."

In his blog,
DSLs--Standalone or Embedded?, Cay then gets into the substance of the debate: "Now here is my thinking. Technically speaking, the submitter is right. A DSL is simply a domain-specific language, and the term does not imply an implementation strategy. [...] I just think that the embedded approach should be the approach of choice when it is at all feasible."

Also in today's Weblogs,
Sergey Malenkov says
"I would like to discuss some proposed changes in the JColorChooser component," which he gets into in
It is time to choose Color.

Jean-Francois Arcand shows off
What's really cool with GlassFish v2 UR1.
"GlassFish v2 UR1 is out today, and as for v2.0, here is a list of cool features the official documentation is not talking about: Comet, Cometd, Apache, JavaFX, etc..."

More details about GlassFish v2 UR1 top the Java Today section.
The Aquarium has an update for all GlassFish users in Must-Have Release - GlassFish v2 UR1 is Now Available. "GlassFish v2 UR1 is out! This is a must-have release as it has about 185 bug fixes and enhancements
(see Release Plan
and Full List of Changes - thanks Shreedhar). This release is available in the usual bundles
including the Java EE SDK Update 4,
the Sun Java System Application Server 9.1 UR1 (also see All SJSAS Downloads) and the Java.Net Download. Blogs describing the individual features will be tagged as

Stephen Colebourne has posted a side-by-side comparison of Java 7 closure proposals in Closures - Comparing the core of BGGA, CICE and FCM. "In this blog I'm going to compare the core of the three principle 'closure' proposals. This is particularly apt following the recent surge in interest after Josh Bloch's Javapolis talk. [...] It is easy to get confused when evaluating these competing proposals. So much new syntax. So many new ideas. For this blog I'll summarise, and then deep dive into one area."

A page on the NetBeans wiki offers a thorough guide to Checking out NetBeans from CVS and doing headless builds: "Most of you might have already got an idea of what exactly is NetBeans IDE all about, its time to take the next big step- work with NetBeans sources. You might have even encountered some bugs, might have filed them on IssueZilla as well. Also, you might have tried out the sample Plug-in's as well as other Rich-Client App's etc. Now, its time to get your hands-on their source code. [...] This document is going to provide you ways on how to use CVS effectively. This is my personal experience which I'm sharing with you people. I hope everyone would be able to benefit from this doc."

Today's highlighted messages from the Forums all focus on mobility-related topics, starting with terrencebarr's reply
Re: PhoneMe integration with Netbeans.
"Are you following Running Java ME Applications? If yes and it is still not working you might be running into a "Windows DLL hell" problem. We have found that after building phoneME with the Microsoft Visual Studio tools the resulting binary may or may not run on other Windows machines. The reason seems to be some Windows DLL version mismatch and as a result you would get the fairly meaningless message about the "system not finding the file specified"."

sfitzjava addresses user experience considerations in
Re: JSR 82 & Average Consumer.
"A consumer should have very little involvement with the phone if you have a server running on the computer the phone connects with and your jsr82 app makes a socket or HTTP connection. The user will be prompted if they want to allow the app to get access to the bluetooth service, and there may be one to make the connection to the server. These user confirmations are for the phone users safety and security."

Finally vkolotov wants to know
How to debug internal classes.
"Anybody know how to debug internal java classes? For example I need to debug It is possible? I do everything required for that:





My IDE and kdp is connected, but IDE not watch for breakpoints, and IDE inform me that "no executable code found at line ## in class com.sun.midp.appmanager.MVMManager"."

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Maybe conference reviewers shouldn't also be speakers