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JavaOnederful Desktop Sessions

Posted by chet on April 24, 2007 at 12:24 PM PDT

I've been meaning to write about JavaOne for some time, but it's just one of the
many things I haven't gotten to, like commenting my code and cleaning out the gutters. I thought about waiting until after the conference, when I will have a bit more time, but it seems like it'd be slightly more useful to put this out there now, instead. So here goes.

First of all, check out a
video interview
with Richard Bair and myself that just hit the web today.
The video URL is linked above, or you can go to the main page at
and see the various interviews posted there.
In our conversation,
Richard and I talk about the current state of Desktop in Java
SE 6, some feature work currently underway, and highlights on some of the upcoming talks at the JavaOne conference.
It's a lot to cover in 7 minutes and 50 seconds.
Good thing I had plenty of coffee that morning.

Next, I thought I'd write down a relatively brief and
completely subjective take
on the interesting conference sessions.  So here is:

Sessions That Chet Doesn't Want to Miss at JavaOne 2007

1) Filthy Rich Clients (The JavaU Course): Monday

I'd better be at this one, since I'm speaking at it, along with Romain Guy. This should be a
fun session.
For one thing, I'm looking forward to having some current Desktop content in the
curriculum. Also, I'm looking forward to spending more time (about 3 hours) on this
subject than can in a regular conference
session.  We'll go into some of
the fundamentals
behind Swing, 2D, and animation, and get into some of the advanced rendering and
topics as well.  We can't do the entire book's worth of material in 3 hours
(or if we could, why
did it take us six months to write it?), but we'll dive deep into various topics.

The catch is that the JavaU day (Monday) is an additional cost on top of the core conference.
But if
you happen to be in town and are spending a wad on the trip already,
it makes sense
to blow a bit more to learn something in-depth in these
tutorial sessions. Our course is only in the morning, so you'll have a chance to
hit one of the other JavaU sessions for the afternoon.

2) Filthy Rich Clients: Talk Dirty to Me. Wednesday@10:55, Friday@2:50

Again, I list this talk because I'm supposed to be on stage with Romain giving them, so I'd better not miss them. But it should
be fun. The talk will be different
from last year. With a whole book's material to choose from, there's plenty
to discuss and demonstrate. Graphics, animation, effects, and generally
stuff, with lots of code examples and demos to show how you can do the same things in your
Swing applications.
And maybe Romain will entertain us with French poetry or a mime act this time (although
I personally hope not).

3) Desktop Java Technology Today: Tuesday@10:50

This session (which I'm also supposed to be giving, thus it's another can't-miss for me)
is going
to give a quick glimpse of where Desktop Java SE is at today, then show you where we're going in
the future. If you want to get an overview of the Desktop platform and the JavaOne
Desktop track's
talks, this is a good way to start the week.

The timing of this talk is interesting to me. It's right after Rich Green's keynote,
and before
Bob Brewin's technical keynote. You could think of this talk as the keynote
but without the band, concession stands, and wardrobe malfunctions. Or, you could
think of this
as a Desktop sandwhich, where the keynotes are the essential pieces of bread, holding
together the real meat of the content: The Desktop Pastrami sandwich, as it were. Expect
rye humor.

4) Extreme GUI Makeover 2007: Wednesday@2:50

This is one of our most successful talks in the past couple of years, based on attendance, 
survey feedback, and highly subjective opinion. The crew returns this year to show
... well,
you'll just have to see.  Should be fun and educational. Good how-tos
on making
cool, dynamic Swing applications.

5) 3-D Earth Visualization with NASA World Wind: Thursday@10:55

This is a very cool project by NASA that shows the power of Java and JOGL for writing amazing,
graphical applications for the web.  Check it out.

6) Being Productive with Swing: Wednesday@1:30, Thursday@9:35

Ben Galbraith is one of the JavaOne 'Rock Stars'. He always gives a good talk, explaining
Swing application development and architecture in a very clear, entertaining, and
way. Join him as as he covers some architectural fundamentals in this talk. Also
be sure to check out
his Debugging and Optimization talk.

7) Easy Deployment is Finally Here: Tuesday@4:40

Join JavaOne 'Rock Star' Ethan Nicholas as he talks about some of the very cool
in store for desktop developers in the deployment space. We are addressing
some of the
issues in application deployment and launching, and you will want to see what we're doing and how you can
take advantage of

8) JSR 296: The Swing Application Framework: Tuesday@3:20

This JSR feature is coming along nicely in a current project. Join veteran speaker
and Swing architect Hans Muller and Joshua Marinacci as they tell you how it all works and
how it's
going to make your life nearly perfect in the future. Or at least how it will improve the
portion of your life.  We can't fix your relationship problems, although it's worth
pointing out that
making Swing development easier means that you can spend less time coding and more
time communicating. Or playing games. Or just writing more, cool Swing applications.

9) Form Follows Function (F3): Wednesday@4:10, Thursday@1:30

If you've followed Chris Oliver's blog on F3 (
, you've seen
the cool things that you can do with the language. Come to this session and learn
more. See how
quickly you can use F3 to code up GUI and graphical applications.

10) User Interfaces: Past, Present, and Future; Good, Bad, and Ugly: Wednesday@9:35

If anyone saw Joe Winchester's talk last year, you know how funny and inciteful
he can be.
I'm looking forward to what he can do with this 'rich' topic this year.

11) BOFs

Don't forget about the BOFs. These sessions can easily rival the best of the technical
sessions. There
are basically 2 kinds of BOFs in our track: "Meet the ..." panels and mini-sessions.
Both are
good session types, but with different
intents and formats. For example, Shannon Hickey's
"Advanced Swing Drag and Drop" BOF will be just like a technical session, just
a bit
later in the day. The "Meet the Swing, AWT, and i18n Teams" BOF, on the other hand,
a panel discussion and general Q&A session with many engineers from these teams.
BOFs tend to be a more intimate atmosphere (no lingerie required, however). They
a great place to find out more about your favorite API or product, or to ask
niggling question that's been on your mind, or to meet and talk with the engineers on the projects
products that you depend upon.

12) Everything else in the Desktop Track, Too

I did not enjoy hand-picking sessions out of the track for this blog, because I was heavily
in helping to select all of the talks for the track this year, and feel strongly that all
of them are going to be good.
There are great architectural talks by Sun and non-Sun folks. There are deep-dives
core Swing areas like threading and the Beans Binding JSR. There are fantastic case
studies from successful companies using Java Desktop technology. There are talks on frameworks
that can make your development lives easier. And so on and so on, through the 45
sessions and BOFs in our track.
So don't see the handful above as an indicator of a full agenda for the conference.
Instead, see it as a teaser and be sure to
check out the
full Desktop track content
to make up your own mind of where you want to be
that week.

13) Oh Right - There's Non-Desktop Sessions at JavaOne, Too

Everything above is All About the Desktop. This is simply because I've been so
busy working with the Desktop track and my own sessions that I haven't had time
to check out the
other conference tracks. But I know for a fact that there is great stuff going on,
another Puzzlers talk, to discussions on OpenJDK, to talks on SE currents and futures,
performance sessions, to tools talks, to ... well, to all of the wonderful stuff
that usually
happens at the conference.

My suggestion to you: clone yourself at the beginning of the week, send your clones into the different tracks,
take it all in all week, and then do a merge on the weekend. It'll probably cause a splitting
but it'll be worth it.

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