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All eyes on the IoT it seems: JAX 2014 report

A roundup of the action at JAX 2014, which took place in Mainz, Germany last week, with over 200 speakers and 2000 attendees enjoying a full week of Java, IoT, JVM, Eclipse, and methodology based talks.

 Last week, JAX 2014 once again rolled into Mainz Germany for a comprehensive week of Java (check out what Brian Goetz had to say about in his Keynote about the language), open source, JVM, and methodology based talks, showcases, and collaboration. As Sebastian Meyen asserted, long gone are the days when Java developers could hide away in their own private bubbles, impervious to developments outside the language.

As the importance of software continues to grow, Big Data, embedded tech, JavaScript and HTML5 have all inched their way into ‘need-to-know’ territory. As such, JAX events are designed to be provide an ideal opportunity for devs to hone multiple areas of their working ‘toolkit’, and, boasting a hugely diverse array of talks and workshops. This year was no exception, with talks spanning everything from Spring to the IoT and agility. With over 200 speakers alone, it’s impossible to cover the entire event. Here are just a few choice highlights:

IoT: A cumulative total of 16 hours were devoted to all things IoT at JAX 2014, resulting in perhaps one of the most vibrant tracks of the entire week. From an initial introduction to the subject, focusing on IoT protocols like MQTT and CoAP, leading into a discussion about the SmartWatch with Java SE 8, a wide range of topics, technologies and trends found their way into the spotlight. As Christian Götz (dc-square GmbH) informed the audience in a session focusing on the protocol landscape, currently between 80 and 100 new devices are connected to the internet every second. Moreover, increasingly, developers are experimenting with open hardware such as the Arduino, the Raspberry Pi as well as other hardware platforms such as Electric Imp and Core Spark.The IoT is slowly coming together, and, if sheer footfall is anything to go by, people are excited about it. Or at least  they think it’s pretty cool.

JavaFX: The dedicated JavaFX day kicked off with an homage to the technology: “JavaFX – 10 things I love about you”.  This day was all about connecting users to the latest and most exciting implementations of the technology, showcasing tech like the JacaFX powered eteoBoard, as well as Captcha Control. The next session, “JavaFX in business applications – Does it make sense? How does it make sense?”, led by Björn Müller ( CaptainCasa ), outlined case scenarios for JavaFX use, using tech like HTML5 as a point of comparison. Another noteworthy talk, “CDI and JavaFX, a ​​decoupled pair of Swing” (led by Sven Ruppert ( Code Centric ), focused on the migration of projects from Swing to JavaFX using CDI from inside the application, demonstrating how the CDI and the JavaFX lifecycle are combined to simultaneously use @ Inject and @ FXML.

Scala: ‘Scala Day’ closed with a keynote led by none other than the inventor of the language himself, Martin Odersky. A veteran of the JAX conference scene, Odersky first spoke about the then little known statically typed language back in 2008. With Scala celebrating its tenth birthday this year, it’s an ideal point to reflect on the story of the language to date. Driven by warders Typesafe, today, there are around 100,000 devs and 200,000 enthusiasts who actively code in Scala. In spite of the criticisms the language has faced (hate for its multi-million line code deployments, for example), Odersky reflected that to him, Scala is a “unifier” – a language with a lightweight syntax, which is simultaneously suitable for large systems. In a case of positive nominative determinism, Scala really did scale, and, as the engaged audience demonstrated, lambdas in Java or not, a growing number of devs are continuing to discover its charm. 

Over the course of the next few weeks, we’ll be publishing a special edition of JAX Magazine, featuring insights from our JAX Innovation Awards 2014 winners, as well as posting exclusive interviews with our speakers on the site. Watch follow us on @JAXenterCOM to ensure you’re kept abreast of all the latest uploads. You can also have a gander of the event photostream here

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