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JavaOne unpack, ADHOC repack

Posted by editor on July 8, 2004 at 6:33 PM PDT

This year was my first time attending JavaOne, and it was a busy week of sessions, keynotes, editing, blogging, and meeting people at the java.net booth and in the halls of Moscone Center.

But the conference I really like is coming up in two weeks.

ADHOC, which starts two weeks from today in Dearborn, MI, is a multi-platform evolution of the old "MacHack" conference. While Mac stuff will probably still dominate, it's now open to all interesting platforms... i.e., anything but Windows. :-)

And while it's nominally a "conference", it's not what you might expect. No 200 foot long video wall. No marketing pitches disguised as sessions. OK, there are still flying objects. And keynotes... except they're given at midnight. And the free food is mostly from Hostess, Little Debbie, and Hungry Howies.

Another big part of ADHOC is the idea of coding at the conference, preferably stuff that's crazy, clever, and useless, for a grand show Friday night. Last year's "hacks" included turning the desktop into a game of "Asteroids" (with the active windows as the asteroids to be shot up), and a progress bar that overflowed and spilled into its containing dialog, eventually drowning its contents in sloshing aqua.

There are sessions too. In fact, I'm presenting one on QuickTime for Java.

The approach of ADHOC curiously coincides with a number of info and help requests I've been receiving regarding programming QTJ — an average of one a day this week and all still needing replies from me — as if a sudden wave of developers has seized onto the technology and is now trying to work past the simple SDK demos and get into hard stuff. Much of it has to do with capture, the Mac version of which was partially broken in an API shuffle last year and has yet to be set right.

Of interest here is the openqtj project on java.net, which aims to provide better demos and documentation than are available from Apple, and to fix pieces that are broken. Sean Gilligan, who I met at the java.net booth at JavaOne, has been building a sample app that aims to be a QTJ equivalent the JMStudio demo of the Java Media Framework. Sean Van Every also has checked in a JNI piece to do image capture, partially alleviating the hole in the official distribution.

So, things are hopping. Hope to see you in Dearborn.

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