The NetBeans Day took place at The Argent Hotel in San Francisco, just a few blocks away from the Moscone center. To make a long story short, it was a great day and it was a huge success.
During the opening keynote, we've seen Rick Ross talk about the NetBeans community and the Project Looking Glass team demo us some cool features of their project. The most interesting part of the keynote was the release of Studio's collaboration module as a free, open source module for NetBeans. From now on, you can benefit from this fantastic tool for free in NetBeans. That's a wonderful news and a great step forward for this IDE. This module offers an IM client for developers within the development environment but also allows you to share files, projects and edit them together. You can also remotely take the control of NetBeans to, say, build the project on your colleague workstation. You can also write your own Collablets (or something like that :) to add new collaboration features.
Various speakers also showed us many impressive features in NetBeans. For instance, Roman Strobl presented the new refactoring tools and the editor hints, comparable to Eclipse's quick fixes. And as expected we've seen Project Matisse in action. To be honest, I hate GUI builders but, for the first time ever, there is one I actually want to use (and did use in fact). And it is called NetBeans.
But there's much more. We've also seen the new NetBeans profile which makes me wonder why we used JProfiler during the last couple of weeks. I also just loved the presentation of NetBeans Mobility. It looks like a great tool to write specific J2ME applications very quickly.
Finally, James Gosling closed the day by handing awards to valuable community members. I also came up on stage to demo Matisse and JDNC/SwingLabs/Swingx data-aware components by building an MP3 player in a few minutes. Richard Bair will show this demo on thursday during James keynote so don't miss it.
This really was a great day and it proved how good NetBeans has become during the past few months. It covers J2ME, J2SE and J2EE and provides very powerful and original tools. Both the collaboration module and Matisse are killer features that could make me use NetBeans on a daily basis.
For more details, I suggest you to visit Gregg Sporar weblog. You'll find screenshots of some new features of NetBeans editor and I'm sure you'll love them.