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From reactive design to JUnit 5, here’s what’s hot at JavaOne 2017

What’s trending at JavaOne 2017? A simple way to tell is to search through the conference catalog and take note of the various sessions that are overbooked and no longer adding attendees to a wait-list. Taking that approach, here’s a quick look at a few of the sessions that JavaOne 2017 attendees will be missing out on if they weren’t savvy enough to register early for a seat.

Lambdas still loom large at JavaOne 2017

A few years ago, when Java 8 came around, everyone was excited about the fact that Lambdas were finally being shoehorned into a full version release. This year, it looks like everyone is getting around to actually using them, as not even an 8:30am start on a Monday morning is scaring people away from Java Champion José Paumard’s Free Your Lambdas session.

Introductory and advanced reactive design

Every time I’ve talk to my good friends at either Payara or Lightbend, they’re flogging the merits of reactive development and design. Continuing to spread the word, Lightbend’s Duncan DeVore will be joining up with IBM’s Erin Schnabel to provide an Introduction to Reactive Design, while Payara’s Ondrej Mihalyi and Mike Croft will be stepping it up a notch by tag-teaming a hands-on lab entitled Traditional Java EE to Reactive Microservice Design.

Interestingly, these hands-on labs are taking place at the Hilton by Union Square, a good ten-minute walk from the main conference grounds located in the Moscone Conference Center. In years past, the whole conference took place in a cluster of hotels next door and across the street from the Hilton. This year, everything but the hands-on labs takes place alongside Oracle OpenWorld at Moscone.

Romancing the Java 9 stone

The conference is called JavaOne, so it comes as no surprise to discover that a session entitled JDK 9 Hidden Gems would play to a packed house. Back in the Moscone West building, Oracle’s JVM Architect Mikael Vidstedt and Intel Corporation’s Senior Staff Software Engineer Sandhya Viswanathan will avoid the Java 9 hype by skipping over big ticket items like Project Jigsaw and Java 9’s multi-jar deployment capabilities and instead, according to the syllabus, “talk about JDK 9 optimizations spanning support for larger vectors with enhanced vectorization, optimized math libraries, cryptography and compression acceleration, compact strings, new APIs with associated optimized implementation, and many more features that help big data, cloud, microservices, HPC, and FSI applications.” To a Java aficionado, a session description like that is more tempting than candy is to a baby. Here’s hoping they can get through as many of those topics as possible in the time allotted.

Keeping Roy Fielding’s dream alive

Java developers continue to take a keep interest in developing RESTful web services, as e-Finance’s enterprise architect Mohamed Taman’s session entitled The Effective Design of RESTful APIs will be running at capacity. Speaking about more than just the development of RESTful APIs in the enterprise sphere, Taman’s session addresses how to create multi-channel RESTful web services that interact seamlessly with IoT components, embedded devices, microservices and even mobile phones. Roy Fielding would no doubt be pleased.

Boyarsky demystifies JUnit 5

And finally, it should be noted that if you want to meet with popular CodeRanch Marshall Jeanne Boyarsky, you’re not going to be able to do it by walking in at the last minute on her hands-on session about solid software testing practices, because that Hilton attraction is emphatically overbooked. Co-presenting with enterprise software architect Steve Moyer, this hands-on session is entitled Starting Out with JUnit 5.

I’m actually surprised that a session on JUnit would go to max capacity. It’s hard enough to get developers to write good JUnit tests at the best of times, let alone attend a technical session on the topic at a time when the beer garden calls. I’m postulating that Boyarsky’s reputation and online persona is responsible for packing the house. Or, it could be due to the fact that the session’s syllabus reads more like a fear inducing warning than a simple overview: “The difference between JUnit 4 and 5 is far bigger than the difference between 3 and 4. JUnit 5 is almost up to the GA release, so it is high time to learn about next-generation JUnit.”

So that’s what’s trending today at JavaOne 2017. It’s largely what you’d expect from a group of forward thinking software engineers. It’s a matter of learning about new topics like reactive design, getting the most out of the language features from both JDK 8 and Java 9, learning how to write RESTful APIs that will integrate multi-channel devices, and finally, learning how to write tests to make sure that any code that gets written is reliable and robust. As I said, it’s pretty much what you’d expect from this JavaOne 2017 crowd.

You can follow most of these speakers on Twitter, and you probably should:

You can follow me, Cameron McKenzie, too: @cameronmcnz

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