Just came back from JavaOne 2007. The experience was as good as I expected it to be, well sort of. The energy and excitement have been going down at JavaOne year after year. This is my seventh JavaOne and I could feel that. Not to sure what to make out that but there are a lot of missed opportunities on Sun's side. On a positive side the sessions were good and the live demos did work! As promised Sun announced the OpenJDK with GPLv2 license. Finally the open source community will get their hands around Java. Sun is going to maintain the commercial (and free) version of JDK and that should allow organizations to continue embedding it without worrying about any GPL issues around derivative work. I attended a session by Eben Moglen and he was quite pleased with this announcement. He was also optimistic that GPLv3 will be aligned with Apache license when it is finalized. I really hope that happens.
Apparently it was a crime if speakers did not to talk about Ajax. The Ajax discussion was hot last year but this year it was almost mandatory for all the sessions. SOA was not a big hit this year. I liked Sun's approach in embracing the popularity of dynamic languages and scripting. Instead of inventing something on their own, Sun pushed jMaki as a solution that wraps all the popular widgets and provides nice abstraction, compatibility, and inter-widget communication. The solution fits well with JSF. It was clear that I am not the only one who hated JSR 167. A couple of speakers expressed their frustration around JSR 167 and hoped that JSR 286 would solve some of these problems. The "convention was over configuration" was a popular message. It took these many years for the vendors to figure out that developers want something up and running when they install a toolkit. They don't want to go through configuration hell just to get few simple things done. Grails and Seam are good examples on "we get it". There were quite a few developers at JavaOne who also coded in .NET and PHP. Zend had a session and they demoed PHP to Java integration. There was a session on .NET interoperability as well. Sun pushed JSF as a flexible yet powerful application development framework. Since JSF is now officially part of J2EE, I hope it gets more tooling support, scalable runtime, and open source faces.