For Those Interested in Industry Insights from James Gosling

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News: For Those Interested in Industry Insights from James Gosling

  1. Last week at JavaOne, Jeff Gendender and a list of cohorts from basementcoders.com sat down with James Gosling at a coffee shop in San Francisco and recorded a highly informal and off-the-cuff interview in which they discussed everything from James’ university days in Calgary, Alberta to the future of Java at Oracle. The audio was recorded on a very simple handheld device, and the typical background noise you would expect to hear in any busy restaurant makes some parts of the interview difficult to discern, but regardless of the sound quality, the interview provides some great sound bites from James, and some compelling insights into the history and evolution of the Java platform.

    Historical page metrics from this site demonstrate pretty effectively that TheServerSide.com readers remain pretty interested in what the “Father of  Java” has to say, and with that in mind, TheServerSide was given exclusive permission to be the first to publish a few of the more interesting quotes that eluted from the conversation, while promising to publish a more complete transcript when time would permit. The transcription of the interview is now complete and can be read in its entirety at basementcoders.com.

    Transcript of James Gosling Interview

    Now some readers have questioned whether the content of the interview is anything more than mere gossip, or if perhaps the community is simply publishing a bunch of unflattering comments from a disgruntled ex-employee of Oracle. Given the fact that the quotes that get pulled out of an hour long interview tend to be the ones that are the most emotionally charged, it might be easy for one to get that impression, but when one really listens to the core of what is being said in the interview, the realization is that nothing could be further from the truth.

    There is no doubt that James is unhappy with the current stewardship of Java, but he also remains optimistic that with a little bit of pressure from the Java community, Oracle will do the right thing and set up an independent Java foundation and essentially ‘free’ the platform. When listening to James talk about Java, it is clear that there really is a passion about the language, and his desire to see it flourish in the future goes far beyond any disagreements he may have had with Oracle’s corporate culture as they took over from where Sun Microsystems left off. “Everything I care about is in the JVM.”

    The full transcript of the interview is now available at basementcoders.com.  The interview itself was over an hour long, so the transcript is correspondingly verbose. But it’s a good read; one that incorporates insights from an industry insider about many of the issues that are at the tip of the tongues of those working in and around the Java platform.


    Transcript of James Gosling Interview
    Interesting Quotes from the Interview



    The individuals who took part in the original interview include:

    • Guillermo Castro
    • Jeff Genender
    • Justin Lee
    • Craig Tataryn
    • Jason Whaley
    • Heath Kesler
  2. There is no doubt that James is unhappy with the current stewardship of Java, but he also remains optimistic that with a little bit of pressure from the Java community, Oracle will do the right thing and set up an independent Java foundation and essentially ‘free’ the platform. When listening to James talk about Java, it is clear that there really is a passion about the language, and his desire to see it flourish in the future goes far beyond any disagreements he may have had with Oracle’s corporate culture...

    As someone who was sitting right next to James as we did the cast, I'd have to say you've hit the nail on the head.  The conversation was not "lets egg him on to get juicy details", we just wanted to get to know him better.  A guy like James has a lot to offer, he's very much a geek's geek and a very pleasant and polite individual.

    At the end of the cast I stated "I'd just like to say thanks for what you've done for us".  That sounded like I meant "Thanks for what you've done for The Basement Coders"; I had already thanked him for the interview; I meant "us" as professional programmers who make a living from the language and platform he spearheaded into an industry. I just wanted to make sure that was clear, sometimes my mouth and mind don't collaborate well in the heat of the moment :)

    So I guess my thoughts are that before one criticizes him too much for anything inflammatory just keep in mind he's a human being and a pretty decent one at that.  Go up to some of the other big names in Java and ask for an interview for a podcast they've never heard of and I'll bet you their answer would be in the "brush-off" realm.

    Big thanks to The Server Side for all your help hosting the podcast file, transcribing the cast and promoting the interview.  Fine people you are.

  3. Thanks Cameron, I had been waiting for this.

    Jan