It’s GeeCON babe!

GeeCON is a conference designed to bring together the users of the Java language and other languages that run on the Java Virtual Machine (JVM), such as Groovy, Scala, or jRuby. It is more than just lectures and workshops. It is also an opportunity to meet world-renowned experts and developers and exchange experience in an informal context.

The third GeeCON edition was held in Cracow on May 11-14. It was composed of three subevents:

  • University Day (May 11): thorough explanation of interesting subjects during 3-hour-long lectures,
  • Main Conference (May 12-13): two days with 17 lectures each!
  • Community Day (May 14)

A number of interesting lectures were dedicated to software engineering and the organization of the developer’s work, among them “Productive Coder” by Heinz Kabutz and “New ideas for old code” by Hamlet D’Arcy. The former presented project maintenance and code refactoring best practices, showing ways to make the coder’s everyday work more pleasant J The latter dedicated time both to technical subjects and soft skills. He presented ideas to inspire programmers even in the most unwelcoming work environment.

Another interesting presentation was Hamlet’s “Code Generation on the JVM” dedicated to automatic code generation tools. He mentioned tools such as AST Transforms, Lombok, and Spring Roo.

One of the highlights of the Community Day was John Long’s presentation of newest Spring framework possibilities. Josh assured everybody that Spring is A-OK and developing rapidly, leaving Java EE far behind. But is so? Antonio Goncalves and Alexis Moussine-Pouchkine spent 3 hours on the first day discussing the power of JEE6. In contrast to its catastrophic ancestors and merely acceptable mother, JEE6 boasts new, improved EJBs, fully functional dependency injection and convenient annotation-based configuration. JEE has taken what is best in the alternative solutions and has good chances of becoming the trendsetter in its category. This topic was continued in Antonio Goncalves’s presentation on CDI.

Jim Webber’s series of lectures were also very interesting. He opened the 2nd Main Conference day with a speech reflecting on the popularity of SOA, presenting interesting theses, dispelling myths and discussing alternative solutions in the world of web services. He returned later, bursting with good, classic English humour, to present Neo4j, a graph database of which he is a co-creator. His presentation filled with lots of colorful examples was bound to convince a number of attendants to try the new alternative to RDB, at least judging by the endless stream of questions after the presentation.

Those who swore their lives to the good old version control systems may now be preparing for a divorce after Bruno Bossola’s compelling GIT version control system presentation.

Community Day was held in another location than the other subevents – behind the closed door of the Swing hotel. The lucky few who managed to book their tickets on time had the opportunity to listen to talks including (but not limited to) subjects such as runtime patching of Java classes or building the Vine Toolkit by the PSNC, using Groovy and Flex. Another popular presentation was given Tomasz Kaczanowski who discussed good practices in testing and tools allowing for efficient testing.

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