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InfoQ Homepage News Devnexus 2024 Celebrates 20 Years of Java Developer Conferences

Devnexus 2024 Celebrates 20 Years of Java Developer Conferences

Celebrating its 20th year, Devnexus 2024 was held from April 9-11, 2024, at the Georgia World Congress Center in Atlanta, Georgia. Key takeaways included the benefits of introducing Java to high school and college students, always recognising architectural tradeoffs with the application of technology, and the importance of knowledge management within software development.

The event featured 160 speakers from the Java community who delivered six full-day workshops and talks on 14 tracks, such as agile, architecture, artificial intelligence (AI), cloud technology, core Java, Jakarta EE, and security. This event also included summits for Java User Group (JUG) leaders and Java Champions. Approximately 1400 developers attended Devnexus 2024.

Two on-site live interview sessions, DevOps Speakeasy and Build Propulsion Lab, were staged in the vendor area during day one and day two of the conference. Interviewees, composed of speakers and other Java luminaries, were asked about their presentation at Devnexus and their conference experiences. In this interview, Brian Demers, developer advocate at Gradle, speaks to Matt Brown, solutions architect at Endor Labs.

Hosted by the Atlanta Java Users Group (AJUG), led by Pratik Patel and Vincent Mayers, Devnexus has a rich history dating back to 2004 when the conference was originally called DevCon. The Devnexus name was introduced in 2010.

Java User Group Leader and Java Champion Summits

The JUG Leader and Java Champion summits were held on April 9, 2024, the day before the day one and day two activities.

JUG leaders gathered to discuss how to improve the introduction of the Java programming language to college and high school students in an age where languages, such as Python and Go, seem to be more attractive. Oracle sponsors a Java in Education program, an initiative to promote Java in local educational institutions, to provide resources and to encourage JUGs to present Java-related topics at their local colleges and high schools.

The Java Champions gathered to discuss how to improve the Java Champion nomination and election process.

Attendees from both summits are pictured in this group photo.

Keynote Address: What Makes Software Architecture So Intractable?

Neal Ford, application architect at Thoughtworks and co-author of "Fundamentals of Software Architecture: an Engineering Approach," kicked off day one of the conference with his keynote address entitled, What Makes Software Architecture So Intractable? Ford discussed architecture versus design by highlighting various software engineering scenarios.

He then went on to explain the concepts of granularity disintegrators, i.e., "When should I consider breaking apart a service?" and granularity integrators, i.e., "When should I consider putting things back together?" Ford concluded that analyzing architecture tradeoffs involved business drivers, architecture characteristics, and tradeoff analysis. His "First Law of Software Architecture", "First Corollary", states: "If you think you've found something that isn't a tradeoff, it just means you haven't found the tradeoff…yet."

Keynote Address: Knowledge Management for the Technically Inclined

Jacqui Read, principal consultant at "Read The Architecture" and author of "Communication Patterns," kicked off day two with her keynote entitled Knowledge Management for the Technically Inclined. Read maintained that knowledge management is key to success in any organization. Examples of Knowledge Management include inventories, policies and procedures, wikis and art, databases, and meetings and workshops.

In 1994, Tom Davenport, currently a Distinguished Professor at Babson College, stated that "Knowledge Management is the process of capturing, distributing, and effectively using knowledge." Read then slightly altered that statement with her own version, stating: "Knowledge Management is the process of capturing, publishing, and effectively using knowledge." She maintained that ignoring knowledge management means: no capture; no publishing; and no effective use. In closing, one of her key takeaways included, "If you want to own your architecture, you need to own your knowledge."

JCP Party

The Java Community Process (JCP) Party was held after the day one activities. As always, the popular NullPointers, the so-called "unofficial" JCP rock-and-roll band composed of Java community enthusiasts, entertained the attendees with classic songs, such as "Come Together" and "Sweet Home Chicago."

From left to right, band members include Gail Anderson, Paul Anderson, Brian Vermeer, Ken Kousen, Freddy Guime, and Frank Greco (standing behind Guime).

Solar Eclipse 2024

A number of speakers and attendees arrived on Monday, April 8, 2024, and a gathering at Centennial Park to witness the solar eclipse was organized by Sharat Chander, senior director, Product Management & Developer Engagement at Oracle. Using a combination of smartphones and eclipse glasses, this is what happens when Java developers collaborate to get the best possible picture of the eclipse.

Patel announced that developers should mark their calendars for March 4-5, 2025, for Devnexus 2025.

Editor's Note

Michael Redlich attended Devnexus 2024 as a speaker having presented on Jakarta EE 11.

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