Sunday, 14 December 2008

Devoxx 2008 - Whiteboard votes

Devoxx 2008 is over :-( But is was a great conference again. And Java really started to feel alive again with real discussions of JDK 7.

In this post I'll go through the general discussions that were held on the Devoxx whiteboards. The figures given are of course indicative only. They are based on those Devoxx attendees who actually participated on the whiteboards. Also, the figures are a record taken at the end of Thursday (Friday scores not included).

The whiteboard photos are also available which provide additional information. Bear in mind that my figures may disagree with the photos in some small way based on when I counted the results relative to when the photos were taken.

Are you considering using JavaFX ?

Java FX had its big conference launch at Devoxx. This question captured developers feelings about it:
   

Yes62
Maybe78
Next version21
Never45
What is jfx?6

It seems clear that Devoxx attendees were pleasantly surprised by Java FX, and are thinking about using it.

What Testing Framework/Tools are you using ?

Testing is an essential developer activity, but what tools get used? I've broken out the big 3 unit testing tools here.
   

JUnit354
JUnit4102
TestNG23
Selenium32
None3
Testing?!5
EasyMock17
JMock2
HTMLUnit2
Fitnesse3
SOAPUI11
Cobertura5

Obviously, a wide range of tools are in use, but in the unit test area JUnit still rules the roost.

REST vs SOAP

A hot topic with many developers who still have to try and convince sceptical managers that REST is a valid solution. I'm displaying the main numbers for the question here:
   

REST50
SOAP17
Both30
JSON6

So, developers prefer REST to SOAP. Somehow I'm not surprised!

What IDE/Editor do you use ?

A question that will always bring out strong opinions:
   

Eclipse214
Netbeans64
IntelliJ126
Vi/vim9
Textmate6
Jdeveloper5
Notepad++7

I'd have expected a stronger showing for Eclipse than this. Maybe Eclipse users have less strong opinions about their tool as Netbeans and IntelliJ users?

Which Java VM are you using ?

How up to date are the versions of Java we use? The question asked Devoxx attendees to mark all they are using:
   

0.9b2
1.03
1.1b6
1.36
1.474
1.5216
1.6255
1.72
1.7 (patched)4
1.7 (closures)2
Java ME13

So, more people are using Java 1.6 than Java 1.5. Interesting.

Checked exceptions ?

Checked exceptions are a feature essentially unique to Java. Many, like me, think they were a very bad idea. But what about Devoxx attendees:
   

Good idea34
Bad idea36
Both, It depends6

Opinion seems split on this topic. Although I should note that the number of votes was lower on this issue, so maybe there is an element of "don't care".

What is your favourite JVM lang other than java ?

The JVM isn't only about Java now. What else are people using:
   

Groovy49
Scala30
JRuby14
Jython10
Fan5
PHP4
Clojure5
Don't care17

So, Groovy is looking pretty popular right now, with Scala seeing some good use. There is interest in additional languages too and this is healthy for the JVM's future (and personally, I was pleased to see Fan get 5 votes at this early stage in its life).

Summary

Thanks again to all the Devoxx voters. I'll write up about language change issues soon. Feel free to comment on any of the vote results.

11 comments:

  1. Hi, nice to sum up the results of the witeboards, although some (maybe even the most interesting) questions are missing, like which features people wanted the most in Java 7.
    Also, the boards where not there on Friday I think, because on Thursday they said it was the last voting possibility on Devoxx because on Friday they would be gone.
    There is also a typo in your post there are more users of Java 1.6 than 1.5, not than 1.7 (maybe also because it is not released yet :-) ).

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  2. Interesting stats. From other polls, it seemed like Groovy had a lot more interest than Scala compared to what is shown there. Not that I mind since my favourite JVM language is Scala.

    "So, more people are using Java 1.6 than Java 1.7. Interesting."

    I believe you meant to say "Java 1.6 than Java 1.5" since it's only natural that 1.6 is used more than 1.7. :)

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  3. Hi Stephen,

    great summary, thanks a lot! Thursday night, I took pictures of the results as well, if anybody is interested check out http://picasaweb.google.com/dlinsin/Devoxx2008#5279236986146294066

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  4. I was amazed to see how much Groovy there was at Devoxx (Groovu and Grails of course, but also within Seam Gen, Spring...). I haven't heard anything about JRuby.

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  5. Antonio, there was a university session about Ruby/JRuby done by Tom Enebo and Charles Nutter. They did a short version of that talk on Friday as well.

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  6. Stephen Colebourne14 December 2008 22:20

    Martin: see the new entry: http://www.jroller.com/scolebourne/entry/jdk_7_language_changes_devoxx

    Ismael: Java version fixed, thanks.

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  7. For the JDK question, it would have been interesting to know not only what version of the JDK people were using, but what distribution. For example, the options could have been Sun, OpenJDK, JRockit, IBM, etc.

    Also, for myself personally, and the Linux distros out there, JavaFX is not going to be on the radar until it is a part of OpenJDK so it can be distributed, which may explain the large non-yes portion of the JavaFX question.

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  8. Stephen,

    Thanks again for your whiteboards efforts, every year we get more and more interesting out of them and attendees are more involved... good stuff!

    Happy Holidays,

    Stephan

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  9. Thanks for the whiteboards, Stephen - do you happen to have a shot of the favourite operating system one?

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  10. Stephen Colebourne16 December 2008 11:40

    I don't have any pictures myself. Stefan, or anyone else at Devoxx may be able to help.

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  11. I'd be interested in how many of those that voted for "REST" are really doing REST (or really understand REST).

    Given Roy's comments from a month or so ago, I think it's pretty clear that a significant number (in fact, I'd argue that it's the majority) of "REST" branded web services do not fit in with the architectural definition of REST that Roy created.

    None of that makes their designs "bad", and it certainly doesn't mean they should use SOAP, but it leaves open the question about how many of those "REST" votes are saying that they want services that are designed around the representation of resource state through hypermedia documents and a set of state transitions, and how many are actually saying "just give me a URL and some data. I don't want to have to deal with all that WS-* junk"

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