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TSS Symposium Europe - Day 3

Posted by meeraj on June 24, 2006 at 4:10 AM PDT

I think the whole theme of the conference has been based mainly around Grid, with different parties trying to push their technology as the best fit for realising grid-based computing. We had four different technologies (some of them I would say can complement each other) claming to be grid-enablers.

  • Spaces based grids pushed by the Gigaspaces guys
  • Grid based on high-performant messaging using something like ActiveMQ by James. Interestingly enough James had a quite indifferent view on spaces.
  • Transparent JVM clustering by the Terracotta guys
  • Distributed transactional caches like Tangosol by Cameron and JBossCache by Bela Ban
  • I have got some interesting views of comparing spaces and JMS, which I will cover later.

    The panel discussion in the morning was led by Cedric, Wayne Beaton, Bruce Tate and Eric Doernenburg. The panel discussed a lot of topics related to development including,

  • Need for dynamic languages -> mainly from Bruce :-)
  • The psychology of testing, importance of having proper functional tests to cater for architectural refactoring in XP environments -> I mentioned this briefly in one of my previous blogs
  • Dominance of Eclipse and IntelliJ over poor Netbeans. Surprisingly (or not) only one amongst the audience admitted to using Netbeans
  • Importance of debugging to increase productivity. I would be interested to know how many of you debug actively as part of your development
  • Interestingly, nothing much was said on build tools, continuous integration etc.

    Heinz's session was quite refreshing in increasing developer productivity. I think I will try to cover the whole of Heinz's session in another blog by the end of this weekend. It does deserve an entry on its own.

    John Davies from C24 gave a session on a case study on the use of grid in investment banking. It started with a lot of promise in terms of real world examples of using grid-enabled technologies. Didn't cover much in the end. As I said earlier, I have got an interesting entry coming up comparing JMS and spaces, I warn you guys, it is going to be a bit controversial :-)

    James presented a nice session on ActiveMQ. Covered some of the advanced features. He was quite excited about message groups. We already use that at work using Oracle AQ's support for correlation ids in messages. Interacting with a JMS server from the telnet console was pretty cool. Other features included,

  • Wildcard search and hierarchical topics
  • Composite destinations
  • XPath based filtering on messages with XML body
  • A variety of client types etc
  • Overall the conference was a nice experience. Without naming names, I thought some technologies were overly hyped up. All in all, TSS did a very good job organizing the conference.