My JAOO summary

September 28th, 2007

Wow!

That’s the best description I could find for it. What a terrific conference. So many interesting tracks that was difficult to choose.

It was also an amazing opportunity to catch up with people from ThoughtWorks and Interface21. I met Mark Pollack from Spring.Net and now a Interface21 employee; Alef Arendsen, one of the founders of Interface21. I asked how Interface21 dealt with Spring as a product, albeit we’re competitors to some extend they didn’t think to twice to answer.

Erik Doernenburg, from ThoughtWorks, has probably seen my skeptical face when he said they have used Velocity for the new TheGuardian.co.uk. He has some very interesting arguments on when Rails is good or bad choice. Chad Fowler, on the enterprise apps panel said some things about Rails that I wouldnt expect from someone from the Ruby camp. Really, he knows what’s hype and knows that it’s not the best thing in the world since sliced bread.

Martin Fowler is an interesting guy. Kinda of a funny character. We had a chance to talk briefly on the Wednesday lunch. I can’t believe he doesn’t use a Mac because he thinks it’s too heavy. I said how cool it was that I finally been involved in a java project, so I didn’t have to start vmware fusion and could work directly on MacOSX, he said he used the same argument when creating code snippets for his book, which should have the same amount of java and c# snippets. Interesting. He attended to our ActiveRecord session, and in his words “it was OK, it was the AR pattern, you made your point clear”. Alright then…

Mark Pollack is an impressive guy. Although we may have our disagreements on castle vs spring, our agreements on other topics outweighs them. He used to have a consultancy/product business, so he knows where it hurts.

Roy and Ayende are funny people. Roy tries to make a joke of everything. I distinctly remember a sentence like “f… off all this domain driven design stuff, let’s get a dessert”. I couldnt agree more! Ayende has the energy to explicit agree/disagree with any statement and make a case for it. I’m more of the “let it go” type of person. I have my beliefs that basically reflect my experience, but I wouldnt get into endless discussions. In fact I pay to not join one :-)

Like Alef said, JAOO has such a reputation and name that now it’s self sustainable. It was so professional that it’s unbelievable.

Our talk on MonoRail was OK, I was really expecting more — I’m the one to blame. And I almost didn’t make to it. For some reason I thought it was supposed to start at 11, but it was at 9:30 !!

Erik Meyers keynote wasn’t fun. And during lunch we talked on how weird we feel about the direction he’s taking. His statements on SQL and Javascript were embarrassing, to say the least. The final panel, though, was enough to wash the dirty laundry and make him believe that there are people out there that likes JS, work with it and actually enjoys it. Btw, doesn’t he look like Colin from the ‘Whose Line is it anyway?’ show?

I can’t remember all the session I attended to, but I’m sure my beliefs were shifted a little to left, up, down and to the right. Michael Feathers made one about defects on software that was great. I think I need to learn more about Haskell. The one about Craftsmanship calls for a different attitude from us when dealing with users. I couldn’t agree more. Eric Evans session said how it’s important to focus on your core, not on the whole (big) app. That makes sense..

It was a great conference. I’m happy I went there.

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2 Responses to “My JAOO summary”

Alef Arendsen Says:

It was good to meet you Hamilton. Nice summary. I too thought it was great to see Chad (and many, many others) not take a commercial stance in certain things and talk about stuff from an objective point of view.

regards,
Alef

Darius Damalakas Says:

Screencasts! Screencasts! Screencasts!

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