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NetBeans Day Tokyo

Posted by gsporar on November 7, 2005 at 6:08 AM PST

NetBeans Day Tokyo was a blast. We've done this gig before in San Francisco and in Beijing. It's part of a world tour.

This time around I did two presentations/demos. The first was essentially an introduction to NetBeans. It's important that folks understand that NetBeans is really two different things: it's a platform for building rich client applications and it's an Integrated Development Environment (IDE). ("It's a floor wax - it's a dessert topping! It's both! It's new Shimmer!" :-) ) I showed some sample applications built on the platform - you can see even more samples here. I think the coolest looking one is Minex. Then I switched to talking about my favorite application built on the platform: the NetBeans IDE. I demoed some of the new stuff that will be in v5.0. In particular, the editor improvements, module development support, and Project Matisse.

Next up was Chuk Munn Lee, who did an excellent explanation of the J2ME support in the NetBeans IDE. He used his time slot to do an end-to-end demo where he built an application, tested it on multiple emulators, and then hooked it to a web application. There's so much stuff in that part of the IDE that I want to learn more about....

Later that afternoon I did a presentation/demo of the J2EE support in the NetBeans IDE. This was essentially the same thing I had done at NetBeans Day in Beijing, but with an additional demo that showed the enhanced Struts support that is coming in v5.0.

Next up was Charles Beckham, Technical Director of Tools at Sun (and the "hardest working man in show business"). Charles talked about the collboration feature and then I helped him do a demo of it. Setting that up had been a bit of a misadventure - our internet connection was so poor that we decided against using the public collaboration server available on So he ran a local server. He also got back up on stage after the collaboration demo and talked about the cool UML features in Java Studio Enterprise.

Then Dan Roberts showed off Java Studio Creator, which was a nice treat. We were lucky Dan was there - he really knows how to do a good demo with it (better than me) and we needed to stretch things a bit during this last section because the beer delivery was running late! Important note: Java Studio Creator is now free - more details are here.

At the beginning and end of it all our boss Jeff Jackson was on stage. Actually, he's my boss's boss :-). He shot Gosling-signed t-shirts out to the crowd and then bought the beers for everyone when it was all over.

So it was a good time. The only odd part about it was that I had never done a presenation before that was being translated in real-time. The attendees had these little gadgets they could hang on their ear so that they could hear the translator. Someone near the front had his turned up so loud that I could hear it on stage. So it was a bit surreal hearing myself speak and then listening to the translator. I just had to keep reminding myself: Must... Pause... Frequently....

By far the best part of the whole experience was the people I got to meet. Keiichi Oono works for Sun in Japan and was kind enough to translate a .properties file for my Project Matisse demo. John O'Conner was there and it was great getting to meet him. And I got to meet some big-time local celebrities as well: Ms. Shimizu, better known as Noniko in the community was there with her natto beans. Similar to NetBeans in that they're good for you. :-) Mr. Kishida of fame was there as well.

An event like this does not "just happen." It takes a lot of work to put these things together. My thanks to the excellent team who made it happen. They are pictured below, from left to right: Takanobu Masuzuki, Akihito Fujii, and Julie Welch.