First I would like to thank all people here who voted for me as BEA Guru of the Year. Being guru at eWorld sure had its privleges, and I did my best to represent the developer community from which I'm a humble member of.
BEA was a whirling dirvish all last month, acquiring a new VM, getting ECPerf results out lickety-split, and baking up some fresh java goodies with WL 7.0, Workshop and Dev2Dev. So of course, eWorld focused mainly on these topics. Here are my two cents on these and other debuts and events at eWorld:
JRocket - A good start. Now BEA is on equal footing with IBM with their own optimized VM. Just don't alienate the Solaris crowd; make sure JRocket runs on Sun!
ECPerf - Most of us know now that performance does not dictate purchase anymore... that's why Ferrari no longer boasts the highest top-speed street legal car (McLaren I believe is king), but that sure doesn't suade Ferrari purchasers! But having BEA on top, even if only fleeting, is just icing on the cake for them.
WL 7.0 - Amazingly, I haven't downloaded nor played with it yet. But from I heard from Seth White's talk on EJB CMP 2.0, WL is chugging along quite nicely.
Workshop - I think the democratization of software development is a good thing. This will only increase the marketshare, and further emphasize the importance of sr developers and architects. No-one should feel threatened by Cajun!
Dev2Dev - There still is a debate over the origins of this name, but I could have sworn I suggested it first at the first BEA Developer Council meeting. Todd Neilson, the CMO, claims he bested me by a week, but that may just be a ploy to deny me of royalties! Regardless, I think it's refreshing to see them taking care of the "little people", us developers! From having the newsgroup, to Guru contest, to Dev2Dev, BEA is one of the few for-profit companies that's still attuned to grass-root approach. Another announcement made by Alfred Chuang, CEO, was that WL 7.0 developer licenses are finally available for free! This is something Cameron and I had been soapboxing all along, and it's good that someone is listening.
Builder - Hey Cedric, great demo! If your stuff works as well off stage as it does on, Workshop will definitely quell a lot of complaints about BEA being too deployment-unfriendly.
Web Services - Went to a good talk by Rob Woollen on this new venture. I think web services has a lot of promise, but now needs execution. I myself am prototyping a web-service-like framework for my current company, so I may expound more on this topic in a future post.
Being Guru - To quote Mel Brooks, "It's good to be the guru!" First I was introduced to my "long lost uncle", CEO Alfred Chuang. He is definitely eccentric, but also approachable. I also had lunch with Scott Deitzen, CTO, and partied with him at the BEA/Intel/Sun bash. The man has a bummed ankle from playing basketball the week before, and yet he was getting down on the dance floor with a vengence! No wonder he gets paid the big bucks! And I was introduced before Scott on the Tuesday Keynote in front of 2000 developers, and give a quick 30 second ditty. Not only was that exhilerating, but also addictive; I think my future lies in politics now! Another idol I had the privlege of meeting (and actually danced with too!) was Jill Steinberg, of Javaworld's Java Jill fame! I'm sure most of us were weened on her articles back in the nascent years of Java, so I was really stoked to meet her in person and to learn she's now heading the editorial efforts of Dev2Dev. And finally, these conventions were all about networking and meeting old acquaintences. Cameron (former Guru), Cedric and I went bar hopping til the wee hours, chatting about how to take over the world with Java :-). And I was hobnobbing with Ed Roman (we missed you there Floyd!), Tyler Jewell, the dev cast of BEA (Rob, Ced, Smitty, Sam, et al). Overall, this was a good trip!
- eWorld in a Nutshell by Eric Ma on March 01 2002 20:29 EST
- eWorld in a Nutshell by Cedric Beust on March 01 2002 21:13 EST
- dev licences for free ??? by Laurent BEDE on March 02 2002 11:14 EST
- eWorld in a Nutshell by Cameron Purdy on March 02 2002 18:10 EST
- Dev licenses for free by Dion Almaer on March 03 2002 13:23 EST
- eWorld in a Nutshell by Gene Chuang on March 03 2002 23:20 EST
eWorld in a Nutshell by Tyler Jewell on March 04 2002 12:46 EST
- eWorld in a Nutshell by Chip Tyler on March 04 2002 10:07 EST
- eWorld in a Nutshell by Don Stadler on March 05 2002 07:22 EST
- eWorld in a Nutshell by Steve Lewis on March 04 2002 03:42 EST
- eWorld in a Nutshell by Tyler Jewell on March 04 2002 12:46 EST
How come all these gigantic Java conferences/expos like the BEA eWorld, JavaOne, and Oracle OpenWorld never come to the east coast (read: NYC)? All we get over here is VBITS (not meant to offend any one) and a bunch or smaller conferences sponsored by trade publications. I am so jealous of you guys who lives out west.
Well... BEA e-world last year was in Dallas, Texas, and the next year's conference is planned in Orlando, Fl. Our business symposium (late 2001) was held in NYC.
So, I think we are well represented on both coasts, and in between.
Generally, our events are offer lots of useful info, and lots of fun too. So, you're all very welcome to participate next time.
Vadim Rosenberg, WebLogic Server product marketing
Gene, good buddy, make sure you sober up next time you want to share your thoughts.
- It's JRockit
- It's Tod Nielsen
- Scott hurt his heel a long time ago but he has indeed come a long way. It's good to see him without his crutches
- We didn't go bar-hopping until the wee hours, we're way too serious for such debaucherie
- It was extremely cool to see Tod and Scott on the dance floor Tuesday night, and they really set the place on fire (this is one of the best geek parties I have been to in a long time, by the way)
Overall, it's good to see such a mix of hard work and hard play.
As an exhibitor, I can make the comment that only a fraction
of the conference attendees seemed to have been frequenting
the show floor. Also, the crowd was rather mixed, we would
expect to see more hard core J2EE developers there. The well
planned and executed party easily compensated for all and
any perceived imperfections of this conference.
I think it's understandable given the market conditions. I am lucky enough to come from a company that is growing, so I got to attend BEA e-World. The sessions were varied, from beginner to business to hardcore, so I don't think BEA was JUST aiming for hardcore J2EE developers.
The T2 sessions that I attended were very good and I got to talk to some developers in one of the birds of a feather that were EXTREMELY helpful to our immediate needs.
Besides, what do you define as a hard core J2EE developer? We're ready for Web Services, but for us the biggest part is the mental paradigm shift we have to go through. The tools seem to be very easy to use, which don't require you to be a hard core J2EE developer. :) :)
In the sessions, the level of "hard-cored-ness" varied, with some people attending already doing clustering and other people just beginning to get into servlets. I don't think there's anything wrong with picking up tools/skills as you need them. Even the Gartner group said we all overspent on App Servers, so that implies most people are not hardcore, but using servlets/JSPs/JDBC.
As for me and my coworker, we visited the show floor several times, since we were looking for content management tools and load testing/functional testing tools. We knew what our immediate needs were, we listened to some others who were aggressive enough to steal us from other booths (is that legal?) and we tried to pick up the coolest toys the vendors were offering. From my POV, it was an extremely successful event.
I think Web Services suites such as those from Collaxa will be more popular once J2EE finds itself in several flavors in a single organization. My company has Notes (moving to WebSphere) my group uses BEA, and our Oracle 11i uses 9iAS. Web Services orchestration will be a no-brainer when you need to integrate in this sort of environment.
You make good points. In this early stage of the market and learning curve of web services, simple tools can go a long way to help. From Collaxa's standpoint, we would obviously like to see the market mature to be able to address people's desire to use web services to solve integration problems which are at the top of any G2000 CIO list these days. Some companies are focusing on making simple things a no-brainer, yet others (like Collaxa) attempt to make complex things (like orchestrating conversations with async loosely-coupled components) easier. The latter will still require a fair amount of skill, hence the reference to hard core J2EE developers. Over time, such skill requirements would be hopefully relaxed, but for now, we have to be realistic.
do you confirm this info ?
does this include any server licence that i'm going to use only for test purpose as well ?
It was a good conference, although a little smaller than last year's. BEA is to be congratulated for putting on a good show. The product also is coming along, finally supporting the requisite JMS cluster features for reliability of service (but we're still expecting a lot more on the perf side). The broadening of the vision of the target market to include the next level of 2-3 million developers that will be able to contribute but definitely won't be slogging out EJBs is a good one. It's a necessary vision for the future of the Java enterprise platform, and if BEA can execute on it well, it will shape the larger future of the industry. It should prove very interesting.
"An announcement made by Alfred Chuang, CEO, was that WL 7.0 developer licenses are finally available for free!"
This is a big deal, and they should have made more of a fuss over it. This is where BEA lagged behind the others.
If I was BEA I would go to consultants and give them whatever they want, because if you can get them bought in, they will use the products at their gigs!
"An announcement made by Alfred Chuang, CEO, was that WL 7.0 developer licenses are finally available for free!"
You can thank JBoss for that. Don't think this was a decision BEA made out of the goodness of their heart. In fact, the next step is lower pricing on deployment as I'd be surprised if a lot of companies weren't putting the screws on their BEA sales reps by threatening to go with JBoss on deployment.
Chip: "You can thank JBoss for that."
You can also thank some visionary people inside BEA that knew it was a necessity but had to fight hard to get the dev licenses available for free. It's pretty obvious that the battle for the future of software is under way, and a good portion of that battle will be won and lost on the development desktop. Not only is BEA providing the dev licenses at no cost, but they've also widened their view of who the "developer" is.
"You can thank JBoss for that"
Sure ... whatever!
Can we also thank JBoss for the sunrise every morning?
Get a life, will ya?
It was a good conference, although a little smaller than last year's.
The smaller number of attendees this year can be attributed to the bad economy, but also to the bumping up of JavaOne to March instead of the June. Why did Sun do that, btw??
eWorld lunches and parties were definitely much higher quality than JavaOne, surprising given the higher cost of admission for the latter, as well as 20,000 attendee vs. 2500! But what I missed were beanbags where I can rest; after 2 days of conference, I'm a walking zombie!
You know, this discussion is just too juicy for me not to comment. I have to be very careful with the words I select since I'm a BEA spokesperson with inside information.
Having said that, I can GUARANTEE you that JBoss has nothing to do with us moving to a subscription model where the first tier is free.
It has everything to do with BEA's strategy of becoming ubiquitous and getting our technology easily into the hands of technologists and decision makers. It also has a lot to do with Tod Nielsen and the executive experience he brings from Microsoft, building community, and being a developer advocate (I've never met a guy who is as hell bent on doing whatever it takes to make the developer happy).
BEA has two types of partners: corporations that extend and complete our platform and developers. It's in BEA's strategic interest to do whatever it takes to make both types of partners happy. With corporations, we have our Star Partner programs and evangelism, which are focused on creating co-marketing, co-selling, and co-development programs for ISVs and SIs. With developers, we have the dev2dev program which now includes a subscription model.
This is huge for the developer community because it's NOT JUST WLS, it's so much more. We will be the only software company that has a subscription model for our entire stack, which is now a single product: WebLogic Platform 7.0. The access you have to WebLogic Server is the same access you will get to the rest of the technology. This includes Workshop, Portal, Personalization, Integration, LiquidData, Workflow, etc.
Also, we are making access to our pre-release technology easier, too. Our dev2dev site has a new program called CodeDirect that was just put up. Our engineers can now create scripts, programs, and other pieces internally and those are made instantly available to developers without going through a review process. And let me tell you, our engineers are always cooking up interesting goodies, so I expect that area of the site to flourish.
Director, Technical Evangelism
BEA Systems, Inc.
<quote>Having said that, I can GUARANTEE you that JBoss has nothing to do with us moving to a subscription model where the first tier is free. </quote>
So what were the download numbers on BEA's free eval. version of WebLogic?
<quote>It has everything to do with BEA's strategy of becoming ubiquitous and getting our technology easily into the hands of technologists and decision makers.</quote>
How do you become ubiquitous at $10K per CPU on deployment? Even at 1K this would be far from ubiquitous.
<quote>It also has a lot to do with Tod Nielsen and the executive experience he brings from Microsoft, building community, and being a developer advocate (I've never met a guy who is as hell bent on doing whatever it takes to make the developer happy). </quote>
Microsoft background as an endorsement for making developers happy aside, it does point to a historical precedent. There is a lot of feeling in the developer community that BEA is poised to become the next Netscape and that .NET is going to come in from the low-end and take the server-side market. How can we developers be so sure that history won't repeat itself? IBM has staying power. Open Source has staying power, as it successfully competes with Microsoft in Linux and Apache. How will BEA compete with .NET? Forget your features for now, as this tends to be a temporary advantage facing the MS blitzkrieg. Just tell us on pricing. Netscape couldn't fight Microsoft at zero dollars. Even if BEA does reach zero dollars on deployment??? how can you really compete?
It's a bit more complex than that. BEA isn't forced to compete against all market segments.
Chip: "How will BEA compete with .NET? Forget your features for now, as this tends to be a temporary advantage facing the MS blitzkrieg. Just tell us on pricing. Netscape couldn't fight Microsoft at zero dollars. Even if BEA does reach zero dollars on deployment??? how can you really compete?"
Look at it this way: On the server side, Microsoft has Linux + Apache + Tomcat + JBOSS eating away its low-end and BEA and IBM with a tight grip on the high end.
<quote>Look at it this way: On the server side, Microsoft has Linux + Apache + Tomcat + JBOSS eating away its low-end and BEA and IBM with a tight grip on the high end.</quote>
Agree with you Cameron. BEA is a high-end play--not a ubiquitous play. The high-end can never be ubiquitous by definition. As for your server-side topology, this recalls the topology of the Unix market. Solaris at the high-end, NT in the middle, Linux at the low-end. It's a fact that only NT and Linux are growing. Solaris, on the high-end, is defending its turf.
... but BEA isn't sitting idly by on the high end. They are rapidly expanding into the next tier of the business environment by going directly after the VB/PB-style developer. And JBoss isn't sitting idly by on the low end. They are adding clustering and admin and managability features etc. And when I write an app for BEA Weblogic, it runs on JBoss and with a little work it runs on Websphere and without much work it runs on Resin and Orion and Oracle and Tomcat and probably a couple others like Pramati. (We've had reasonably sized web apps that ran on Weblogic and Websphere and Tomcat and Orion and Resin. Sometimes we just tested for the heck of it, because it is so darned easy. EJBs were a little trickier, but that's changing too. Orion and Weblogic were pretty interchangeable, and JBoss was getting there in a hurry. Websphere was the ugly duckling of EJBs but they've finally decided that's got to change.)
And Microsoft .NET? Other than the Java guys who are worried about it and the remaining faithful VB/MFC guys that have waited all these long years for it, no one is making much of a fuss about it. It's got one big industry backer (Microsoft) and even the companies that Microsoft owns chunks of (like Apple) aren't paying it much heed. Corel is out to prove that they can muck up .NET worse than they did their AWT-based spreadsheet and Ximian is just trying to figure out how to secure their next round of funding.
So we need to concentrate on what's next for Java, and continue to move the industry and the technology forward:
1. Continue to empasize reliability and security and continue to mature the quality and feature set through incremental releases and the JCP. Performance is a nice bonus, but sleeping at night and knowing that your site is still running is a pretty good feeling.
2. Open up Java even more, let more and more companies join in the industry. Drop as many licensing restrictions on Java as possible as long as compatibility is a pre-requisite. Whatever Sun does, let's hope they don't certify JBoss, because then all the developers will quit working on it. ;-)
3. Really focus on the next tier of developers, make the tools user friendly for more than just server-based EJB-based JCA-based 2pc-based development. (How about a really nice tool for building -- and maintaining -- Swing UIs that a VB developer could use? How about a tool that someone on a Mac would find attractive? ;-) It's past time to do this; kudos to BEA for focusing on this.
4. Get the Java runtime into Windows. On the CD. On every desktop that ships. And get it to auto-update itself. Hopefully the nine states will get this to be a requirement for Microsoft. Write your state's attorney general and let them know how you feel.
5. Get the Linux community to buy into Java. Completely. If that means supporting the attractive features from the C-pound CLR, then lets do it. Java-to-Java interoperability is nice, but Java-to-C and vice-versa interoperability (in a more natural manner) is what our Gnuish friends want. Let's get Java in every distro of Linux that's out there, and let's get Sun to help champion it. While we're at it, let's finally get the startup lag down and the initial footprint too! If we let .NET/CLR get a toehold in Linux, when Java provides a much more open and compatible philosophy, we will only have ourselves to blame.
6. Thank Apple for supporting Java. Get your company to buy a Mac so you can "test compatibility features" (and a little Quake3). If you produce Swing apps, advertise that you test on and support the Mac. Make it look good enough on a Mac that Mac users can't figure out how you did it.
7. Share the wealth: Mentor someone you work with; post a pattern on the server side; write a Java book; port the JVM to the 650x (eh Cedric?). Find some way to give a little back.
Tyler Jewell writes:
"Having said that, I can GUARANTEE you that JBoss has nothing to do with us moving to a subscription model where the first tier is free."
I can believe that. I suspect it has more to do with Bluestone. But no matter, it's great that you are doing this. Thanks.
"Also, we are making access to our pre-release technology easier, too. Our dev2dev site has a new program called CodeDirect that was just put up. Our engineers can now create scripts, programs, and other pieces internally and those are made instantly available to developers without going through a review process. And let me tell you, our engineers are always cooking up interesting goodies, so I expect that area of the site to flourish."
And this is even better. An endless flow of cool ideas, designs, and code snippets for consultants to download and use will teach us a lot about Weblogic products and encourage us to have 'brand loyalty' to the Weblogic line of products!
This is a brilliantidea. I don't know about how other people learn, but I learn best by seeing a working example, particularly one buttressed by a good explanation. Right now I have no idea what the other Weblogic products do and what problems they solve. I would like to know. So examples of all the products working together would be a great marketing strategy for BEA.
Can someone from BEA really confirm that weblogic server dev licence are free and not only for a 30 day evaluation purpose....
I've contacted patrick.orourke at BEA, and he said nothing but that you can download weblo and use it for 30 days...
I would be very pleased to know if this is a rumor or a real statement since i'm about to buy 50 dev licences..
FYI, thought that this may be of interest;
no more flame war here please, just for information:
From: Christiane Hochholzer [bea.com]
Sent: Montag, 9. September 2002 11:38
Subject: WG: BEA Development license free?
Hello Mr. Vorburger,
it is not correct. We are not able to offer you a free development licenses for BEA server.
Your are right - the announcement from Alfred Chuang is quiet confusing. It meant that for instance, when you order a WebLogic Platform licenses you have the option to get the workshop tool for free. Depending on the facts.
Partner Response Center Coordinator
Central & Eastern Europe
I donno. JavaOne might be bigger but when I go to a conference I want to be able to solve some real-life problems. I was able to talk to the developers, ask questions, yadda yadda yadda. eWorld was what I needed when education/consultants/tech-support couldn't pull through. There are some things that BEA's educators haven't done, some things consultants haven't done, and other things that tech support isn't even aware of. So far I haven't been that impressed with any three of the above (for really difficult problems, no one knows except for the developers), but eWorld got me what I needed.
Besides, what's it take to get an educator from BEA to come give us a custom course? We've been trying to increase BEA's cashflow for like a month now, but no one wants to take our money.
On the lighter side: the beanbags were outside, right in front of the bay. Except they were made of grass, with the wind blowing in your hair.
Oh yeah, I can't forget: I got to see Tyler Jewell (SupaStar!) in action in his Top 10 e-Business mistakes (not his mistakes, other people's). The NetCar demo was really impressive, too.
Oh yeah, the JBoss argument is completely bogus. I love JBoss, but y'know, well. Unless you want to go back to EJB1.1 (not gonna happen), with 3.0 still in alpha stage. I am glad that they are around and I definitely believe they are a valuable asset to the J2EE community.
But still, eWorld showed me that BEA is ahead of the game, they just jumped forward a couple light years ahead with the new developer tools. Java has gone the long way around to making developers completely happy, but you can't take any shortcuts if you want RAS systems.