It is a fact: JavaOne 2008 unofficially started today! CommunityOne kicked off at 9:30 with a general session. At 11:00 the first parallel sessions started. Here is what I think of today.
During the general session Ian Murdock, Vice President of Developer and Community Marketing at Sun Microsystems and "ian" in the name of my favourite Linux distribution (Debian), drew a comparison between Linux on the one side and Sun and Open Source on the other side as modular systems. Whereas in Linux the packages are the modules built and installed around a core, we, the developers and users of Sun and Open Source software, are the modules around those Sun and Open Source software.
Next, Matt Asay, General Manager and Vice President at Alfresco, led a panel of four illustriou session suggested s people in a discussion of the value of the community to Open Source software. It became clear that theOpen Source community plays an extremely important role by using, submitting code and bugs and blogging about Open Source software.
Finally, Rich Green, Executive Vice President of Sotware at Sun Microsystems, talked us through the new and exiting features of OpenSolaris. We had to leave this session since the parallel sessions were starting.
First parallel session: Getting started with OpenDS
OpenDS is an Open Source Directory Server. The session summary in the CommunityOne booklet suggested a look into the APIs available to extend the capabilities of the server. After that, a deep dive into Penrose, an Open Source Virtual Directory Server, was on the programme. Unfortunately, the look into the APIs only proved to be a list of available methods and a brief oral explanation on how to use them. The Penrose server was only superficially skimmed. I hoped for more code examples but the total amount of code examples was exactly zero.
Second Parallel Session: OpenOffice.org Extensions Development
JÃ¼rgen Schmidt, OpenOffice.org API Project Lead, presented a nice session about the OpenOffice.org API and the OpenOffice.org plugin for NetBeans. In the past I have attended several of JÃ¼rgens presentations to keep track of the new features that the API and the plugin offer. It is a shame that only about 20 people attended this session. It was clear from the look on JÃ¼rgens face that he wasn’t too happy about this too. Next Friday, JÃ¼rgen will present a hands on lab and I’d suggest to anyone to attend this session. The main thing I remember from the session is that the API is slowly changing. Where in the past UnoRuntime.queryInterface was a common call in almost any OpenOffice.org API operation, slowly new service providers make their way into the API so more natural Java methods can be used to get hold of properties and interfaces of OpenOffice.org components.
Third Parallel Session: OpenSSO
What was announced as a workshop proved to be a presentation about OpenSSO, the Open Source Single Sign On project. Pat Patterson and Daniel Raskin introduced us to the main goal of the OpenSSO project, which is to provide an Open Source Single Sign On solution for federated access to any web application, both hosted inside and outside companies. Speaking of federation, Pat explained that this basically is using the same user indentity to authorize that user over different systems. See also this wikipedia page about federated identity.Next Pat introduced the FedLet: a small component that enables applications to support federated identity with Sun tools. Finally, we got some details about how to enable federated identity on GMail and SalesForge. See my colleague Lucas Jellema’s post about this session for more info.
Fourth parallel session: EclipseLink
The final session I attended today was about EclipseLink, the Open Source version of TopLink. First and foremost, EclipseLink v1 is to be expected in June 2008. Besides that, Doug Clarke and Shaun Smith, both working at EclipseLink at Oracle, gave an excellent outline of what EclipseLink is and what it adds to the reference implementation of JPA. EclipseLink will be the JPA provider in GlassFish v3, so if you haven’t had a look at it now is a good time to do so. Besides implementing JPA 1.0, EclipseLink has a set of annotations (or equivalent XML configuration options) that enhance JPA for better Cache configration and advanced mappings, such as @Converter, @BasicMap and @NamedStoredProcQuery. Doug and Shaun did a nice and deep technical session on EclipseLink and it got me really excited about it.
Despite feeling slightly ill today and skipping the middle part of the sessions to take a nap back at my hotel, CommunityOne proved to be a good warm up for JavaOne. It was great to be there and if you haven’t attended this year but will attend JavaOne, be sure to attend CommunityOne next year as well!