Although I would have liked to post this on Day 2 and Day 3 of the symposium last week, I could get down to doing it only this morning. Day 2 and Day 3 had a whole lot of fantastic sessions like Day 1. Listing them all would be futile, so I am just going to pick up interesting pieces randomly and talk about it a bit. The session that I liked the most and that I was also disappointed with the most was a panel discussion titled: "Languages: The Next Generation". Ola Bini, Ted Neward and Guillaume LaForge were the panel and Eugene Ciurana was the moderator. Ola was in a rapid fire quizing mode where he jumped to answer as soon as his turn came up, Ted had some good well thought out perspectives and Guillaume was so quite that his presence was never felt. Ola said that Java was the last of the big languages. Ted summarized a couple of interesting things:
- There isn't much of a difference between the number of lines of code that a beginer and an expert writes. Ofcourse the code quality varies.
- From C, C++ to Java and now to Ruby the productivity, measured in terms of lines of code to machine instructions, hasn't changed all that drastically. Language like LISP however, when compared with C++ or Java make a quamtum jump when measured on this same scale.
All three unanimously recommended that a programmer's second (or third or next) language should be substantially different in approach from their existing ones, so that they look at programming languages from a completely new perspective.
However, the discussion never really addressed the topic of the next generation language. The impression one got after the session was that none of these guys had a clue about it.
Then there were plenty of sessions on Spring and on Grrovy/Garils. By the third day I was tired of these words and wanted to avoid them like the plague.
Geert's session on JVM clustering was good as always. I don't like the pitch to market Terracotta under the covers though! Ola's session on JRuby testing was amazingly interesting for a talk on testing. Kirk Pepperdine's performance related sessions were exceptional. John Davies' session on extreme transaction processing and ESB was good.
All in all the server side symposium was a great conference. Had a bunch of enthusiastic attendees (most of them were present even in the post lunch sessions on the last day -- which rarely happens in the US). Had some good speakers. The venue was very good and the city provided everyone abundant options to hang out in the evenings.