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Last one of 2003
Hello Atlanta Java Enthusiasts
The Atlanta Java Users Group (AJUG) has had a tremendous
2003. We have had several fantastic presentations from
some our very own Atlanta-based Java gurus as well as big
name speakers such as Dave Thomas and James Gosling. The
number of participants in AJUG events has grown over the
last 12 months and we?ve had some huge audiences for some
of the more popular topics. James Gosling?s Q&A brought
in over 300 members in November! We have also signed up
several new sponsors such as Compuware, Spectrum Software
and Sun. Plus we have found several new volunteers to
serve on our board of directors and various committees.
All of our current directors and committee volunteers are
Java software developers themselves. In addition, we
spent time on discussing the state of the job market and
we allowed open announcements from recruiters and hiring
managers. While the first part of the year was quite bleak
it seems the market has really picked up in the closing
months of '03.
AJUG?s purpose is to be the focal point of Java evangelism
in Atlanta by offering the Java community opportunities to
network and collaborate. Our mission is to provide our
membership with educational events on topics that you wish
to know more about. AJUG is a membership driven and a
volunteer run organization.
December?s Meeting (12/18):
Overview of J2EE Rapid Application Development Tools
Developing your first and often your subsequent J2EE-based
applications can be frustrating and time-consuming as you
overcome the multiple complex learning curves of
web-based, object-oriented, patterns-based programming,
plus the complexities of Java APIs such as JDBC, EJB, JSP,
JavaServer Faces and important frameworks such as Struts.
Several vendors have recently rose to meet this challenge
by developing new IDEs that are not software engineer
focused but targeted at the enterprise corporate business
application developers. These new IDEs focus on the
programmers who have been using Visual Basic, PowerBuilder
and Delphi for building database-driven client-server and
We already have a commitment from Sun to show off their
new drag-n-drop visual tools for building JavaServer Faces
applications called Java Studio Creator (aka Project
Rave). We are open to other participants such as Oracle
with the latest JDeveloper, IBM with the latest WSAD and
BEA with Workshop, all of which support drag-n-drop visual
Struts development. At this time I don?t have commitment
from those vendor representatives. If you know of anyone
in those organizations that might like to participate
please have them contact me (firstname.lastname@example.org). And
if you are a user of these tools and have a story to tell
please let us know about that as well.
Planning for 2004:
We are in the process of prioritizing and organizing our
monthly meetings for 2004. As always we really need and
appreciate your input. We tend to prioritize from a topic
perspective and try to take advantage of Atlanta?s local
experts and AJUG members as much as possible. The
following represents our current thoughts on possible
topics (and we?ll then need to go find speakers):
-We will continue our efforts to get Josh Bloch (Effective
Java, spec lead on J2SE 1.5 Tiger) and Craig McClanahan
(Struts, JavaServer Faces, Tomcat), however these fellows
are hard to come by.
-JavaServer Faces ? MVC Framework UI framework for
building web-based applications
-Web Services: this topic remains one of the hottest of
?buzzwords? in our industry and vendors, open-source
community and standards-bodies continue to grow and evolve
-Portlets: a new specification that allows a developer to
built web applications that are portable across vendor
-Swing, SWT and other Rich client development techniques,
best practices and design patterns. Did you know
Macromedia is coming out with a new technology for allow
J2EE-based applications to server/render rich-client
applications using Flash in the browser? Check out
-Java on mobile devices ? J2ME: Developing for portable,
wireless devices continue to grow.
-Guru Night: We first ran with this concept in 2003. A
panel of speakers who collaborate on the overall
presentation and provide numerous insights in to practical
and applied J2EE development tools, techniques, best
practices and design patterns.
-Java game development techniques and tools. As James
Gosling recently suggested, it seems that the game
development community is pushing the state of the art in
hardware and software.
-Open Source in enterprise (Corporate America) business
applications: How about a presentation that talks to all
the open source products that a typical enterprise
developer might use? It would be nice to hear from some
local companies that are successfully deploying with open
-Eclipse: This IDE continues to gain market share and a
presentation that demonstrates the reasons why it
continues to grow in popularity.
-Exception Handling ? NullPointers, who needs ?em but we
all got ?em: One of our members has volunteered to talk
to this issue and any code-level presentation (not only
PowerPoint but show us code) is always valuable.
-Persistence with Hibernate and/or iBatis: This topic
continues to generate excitement in the Java community.
Various O/R ?tools? have sprung up over the last year or
so. Hibernate and iBatis seem to be catching on.
-Model Driven Development: One of our sponsors,
Compuware, provides tools that enable this approach for
J2EE software generation. MDA ? model driven
architecture is a topic of interest to many.
-Designing for Security: It seems the concepts of
authentication, encryption, identity management, single
sign-on, directories, LDAP, etc. are all very hot topics
in enterprises today. A presentation on how a Java
developer identifies the use cases, business requirements,
tools and techniques to address this area.
-Designing for Scalability: Often requested but we rarely
have a volunteer who is willing to take on such a topic.
Typically scalability is in the context of a specific
application server or a sales pitch from a J2EE monitoring
software vendor. It might be a trick to find a suitable
presenter on this topic.
-JMS and message-based, asynchronous application
development: A MOM (message-oriented middleware) is often
the underlying technology for many large-scale,
high-transaction volume systems, especially one that
incorporates legacy system integration.
-Java and XML: Various techniques and strategies for
using XML and Java together.
-The latest and greatest from the Open Source community,
Apache and SourceForge. The community continues to
innovate and provide new tools, utilities and frameworks
for Java developers. Keeping abreast of what they do and
how to use these tools is a challenge.
Other ToDos in 2004:
-Our website has been and continues to be refurbished,
reorganized and given a face-lift. We have a group of
volunteers being lead by Justin Meads working on this
-We have often talked about providing more sessions than
our 12 monthly meetings. One concept that has been talked
about relates to BOFs (birds of a feather) sessions where
a sub-group that is specifically focused on Java-related
and/or software engineering-related topic such as Swing,
J2ME, Gaming, design patterns. If you have any ideas in
this area please let us know.
I would like to thank our corporate sponsors who allow
AJUG to execute our regular meetings without a cost to
you, the member. Our sponsors are: BEA (www.bea.com),
BravePoint (www.bravepoint.com), Inflow (www.inflow.com),
Spectrum Software (www.spectrumscm.com) and Compuware