SpringOne – Days 1 and 2

I finally found some time to post updates. Whew! It has been busy!

Day 1
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On Monday, I hooked up with the SpringSource guys. It seems everyone had something to work on. I wanted to get 0.9.0 completed and working before giving my demo of PetClinic on Thursday. Just about anyone I spoke to was polishing up their slides. It is truly fantastic to be chatting with the guys at SpringSource.

Rod Johnson gave the keynote addresss, focusing on the target goal of SpringSource in reducing the complexity of application development. Complexity means more development, more risk, and in turn, more cost. SpringSource’s overarching goal of reducing complexity must be working, because he had several metrics showing how much has been adopted in some degree by the industry.

After the keynote, I was finally able to meet up with Keith Donald. We have been playing email tag for some time, and I was surprised to find out his office is probably 10 minutes away from mine. Hopefully we can get together soon after the conference. It was also great to meet Mark Pollack, Chris Beams, Ben Alex, and of course, Rod Johnson himself. While I enjoy reading their blog entries and source code, there is no substitute for meeting the real person.

Day 2
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In the morning, I attended the Grail presentation. That was awesome. Graeme demonstrated building a twitter-like site using Grails in 40 minutes. Okay, he promised 40 minutes, and took 45 minutes, but only because he started adding extra functionality not found at the actual twitter site. In the process, I was realizing the value Grails places on plugins. Grails is good at creating a skeleton application, and then letting you flesh it out. I was starting to get the idea that Spring Python could use a command line utility with plugins to generate a skeleton CherryPy app, Django app, or anything else developed by a plugin. Well, I went to the next session, “Intro to Spring Security 2.5”, opened my laptop, and started coding. I managed to write a static skeleton app, and then began working on a command-line utility to dynamically generate this. That is still in progress.

I admit I was only listening with one ear to Ben’s presentation. Sorry Ben! 1) I am already somewhat familiar with Spring Security, 2) most of it is geared towards web apps which I don’t write, and 3) I was really stoked at the idea of a command-line tool that download Spring Python plugins from a network location. I did catch his question, “who here is NOT writing web apps?” I was the only person in the room who raised a hand to that. When asked what I was using, I answered “Swing desktop apps.” That plugged Ben’s point that Spring Security uses the same tactics.

After lunch, I attend two sessions about Spring Integration. This is channel based messaging, which is sort of like JMS on steroids in my book. They interface with JMS, but also with other things like file-based systems, web services, RMI, anything. And it is easy to plug in your non-message based service to a chain of processing. This is wiring your app in a different, more decoupled way. I sure could have used this about five years ago.

Later that evening, Russ and I got together to work on his Spring Extensions presentation. Russ is planning to talk about the process Spring has set up to better manage new code, and wanted to compare the process with real life, and Spring Python is his choice target. If you are at SpringOne and can read this before Thursday, I highly suggest you attend that presentation. It will definitely be entertaining (shameless plug).

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