The 18th JavaOne started this Sunday in San Francisco. Covering three hotels in downtown SF, Hilton, Parc55 and Nikkon and with keynotes in the Moscone Centre, Oracle OpenWorld is hands down the biggest conference I’ve ever attended.  It covers 5 days in total and over 500 sessions plus side exhibitions and events. And it certainly needs the room, not only to accommodate the number of attendees going to these sessions but the breadth of the platform itself. 

Oracle have literally stopped traffic, cutting off streets for the duration of the week which turn into venues for street parties, a place for attendees to congregate during free lunches and drinks whilst taking time out from sessions. Oracle have plastered massive billboards around the Moscone centre, and large banners and signage elsewhere downtown.


The JavaOne conference hotels have so much Java and Duke branding everywhere, literally every entrance to each hotel has Java decals on the doors and windows, plus large Java promo’s covering walls and pillars on the outside. And to top it off, there are Oracle coaches allowing attendees to hit the other groups of hotels where the talks for Oracles other products (eg Database) take place. This place may as well be renamed Java City.

But all this pizazz is no good if there isn’t anything new to discuss. Java had stagnated in recent years, a lot of developers have tried other platforms and Oracle has to win hearts and minds over and back again. There has been a lot bubbling in the background since Java 7 bought lots of changes to the backend.  

To address this, day zero of the conference has two main features.  First it features the JavaOne strategic and technical keynotes at Moscone Centre to bring the greater Java developer community up to speed. Second, it is there to get Java Champions, JCP members and Java User Group leaders together to discuss the future of the platform. As leader of the local MelbJVM user group, this networking has bought new insights and ideas that we can implement for our own growth.

Some key highlights Oracle have already focused on in the keynotes are:

  • Lambdas arriving in Java 8. The design of the feature to focus on data over code. The extension to the syntax and existing APIs that allow you to use lambdas on old code without having to wait for your APIs to be updated to Java 8.
  • Highlighting Oracles renewed focus on the embedded space and the internet of things.
  • Updated Javascript support by means of Nashorn.  How Javascript seamlessly calls Java and vice versa just like JRuby, Groovy, Scala and every other polyglot language out there.
  • The announcement of Project Avatar, a node.js implementation for the JVM that allows programming with the popular node.js model, but with the ability to utilise the existing JavaEE APIs and technologies in that way.  And actually allowing node services to run in an application server.
  • Emergent languages on the JVM.  The JSR 292 – the new scripting engine supports all this.
  • JavaFX taking a long term view as being able to deliver the UI capabilities for desktops and embedded devices, including 3D support and rich controls and great binding.
  • The growing up of JavaME so that it is using Java 8 syntax and most of the SE SDK rather than stuck on the older < Java 1.4 syntax and CLDC profiles
  • EE7 Websockets, Cloud support, and JSON binding.
  • Java 9 and beyond.

My own personal goals for JavaOne are to:

  • Support fellow Melbournite, James Ladd who will be presenting on his Smalltalk language implementation for the JVM, Redline Smalltalk.
  • Learn more about upcoming Java / JVM technologies.  Practical technologies, Gradle, RESTful web services, and cloud tech + upcoming Java 8 features Lamdas and Nashorn
  • Network with fellow JUG leaders
  • Find out more about the Adopt A JSR program

It looks set to be a great week.  With thanks to both Oracle and Shine Technologies I’ll be covering the event directly from San Francisco.  Stay Tuned for further blogs and updates.

Written by Kon Soulianidis

I'm a Senior Consultant at Shine Technologies. JVM languages and technologies are my thing. A JVM developer is never short of choice. In my spare time I run MelbJVM, the Melbourne Java and JVM Users group.

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