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CodeCamp at FootHill College. Click Here for Details and RegistrationPlease join me at the 4th annual Silicon Valley Code Camp at Foothill College in Los Altos on October 3-4, 2009. It is shaping up to be even bigger and better than last year's event.  Attendance is FREE, but space is limited. So, you do need to register in advance. Sessions will range from informal
QCon San Francisco has invited bay area Java Developers to a Java Community Event on Thursday November 20th, 2008. This free event will be a one-hour long panel on the State of Java with well known Java luminaries and QCon SF speakers. Although free, an advance RSVP is required and space is limited. The registration page also lists who has already signed up to attend this event at the bottom of the page. From 6:15pm to 6:45pm at the Westin hotel, there will be a chance to mingle with QCon Speakers and Attendees. After that, there will be a State of Java Panel hosted by Kresten Krab Thorup. Rod Johnson, Brian Goetz, Emmanuel Bernard, Max Ross, Bill Venners and possibly even more to be announced later will all be panel participants.

QCon Registration Discounts

If you are interested in attending QCon SF 2008, you can save $100 off registration price by using the following promotion code: javagroup_100off. I look forward to seeing other local Java developers at QCon's inaugural Java Community Event in San Francisco. There is more information about the speakers and QCon here: http://www.qconsf.com/ That's All Folks!
CodeCamp at FootHill College.  Click Here for Details For the third year running, the Silicon Valley Code Camp will be held at Foothill College in Los Altos, California. This is my second year organizing the Java Speaker Track at Code Camp with the help of Kevin Nilson. You can see the full session schedule for the weekend here. You will notice in the session topic tag cloud that Java is the number one session topic at camp this year with 36 out of 115 sessions related to Java. This year, I am organizing a Lightning Talk session right after lunch on both days of camp. Although we had to close session submission in the middle of October, there are still plenty of opportunities to give a lightning talk and/or demo at one of my sessions.
You can follow the official updates about camp via this RSS News Feed or by following sv_code_camp on twitter. Those of you that have twitter accounts are encouraged to tag your own tweets about camp with the #svcc hashtag. All tweets with this hashtag or tweets directed @sv_code_camp or tweets that contain the phrase "Silicon Valley Code Camp" can be viewed in this special twitter search result for camp. The Hackathon4Kids is a new thing we are trying this year on Sunday afternoon. Bess Ho from Silicon Valley Web Builder organized this with the help of several Google employees. It is important that any kids and their parents that would like to participate fill out this separate Eventbrite registration form. For any adults planning to attend camp, please complete the free camp registration ASAP to help us with our food planning efforts for the weekend. It is not too late for companies to become a camp sponsor or a raffle prize provider. Finally, be sure to stick around for the BBQ on Saturday evening. That should be the largest gathering during the weekend and it is also when we will be giving away the raffle prizes. That's All Folks!
Sentilla Labs, a recently launched community website, offers developers a step-by-step guided tour through the project development process, allowing visitors to download code and illustrations and rapidly bring projects to life. Some projects at Sentilla Labs can be created with fewer than 100 lines of code. In addition, developers can upload and display their own projects with confidence because they retain all rights to their code. I had hoped to include a review of my own experience programming with a Sentilla Perk kit, but, my kit has yet to arrive. Sentilla won a Duke award at this year's JavaOne. For folks who haven't seen these little devices that run on Java Technology, check out this video of several industry luminaries talking about the concept of pervasive computing and how Sentilla is innovating in this field. There is also a nice technical article from JavaOne 2008 about the architecture of the Sentilla motes. Those familiar with Sun Labs' Sun SPOT (Small Programmable Object Technology) technology may be curious about comparisons with Sentilla's products. One big difference is that, relative to Sun SPOTs, Sentilla's technology runs on extremely resource-constrained computers that use very little power. Also, there is a significant price difference between the two with Perk kits going for $199 and the list price for Sun SPOT kits at $750. At present, there are only a small number of projects on this new community resource site. However, I anticipate this situation will change quickly now that the site is open to the public. Check it out!
CodeCamp at FootHill College.  Click Here for Details and Registration For the third year running, the Silicon Valley Code Camp will be held at Foothill College in Los Altos, California. This will be my second year organizing the Java Speaker Track at Code Camp with the help of Kevin Nilson. This year, I am also organizing a Lightning Talk session for each day of the conference. If you plan on attending, please register early so that we can get a good indication of the interest in code camp for this year. Registration is free and anyone that is registered can submit a technical session. We encourage people that have never presented before to give it a try. There are plans to have a speaker training prior to Code Camp this year for new presenters. Stay tuned for more news on that front.

Community Wonderland Blog

Posted by van_riper Jun 11, 2008
After seeing the latest updates on Project Wonderland during JavaOne combined with the great memories of hanging out recently at the java.net Community Corner in the Pavilion, I keep thinking about a year round virtual Community Corner implemented using Project Wonderland software on Sun hardware. A place where Java User Group (JUG) Leaders, Sun Java Champions and others from the Java developer community can gather virtually anytime. The funny thing is that the Sun JUGs Program has hardware available that we could use just for this purpose. Kevin Nilson, my Silicon Valley Web JUG Co-Leader, and I have even offered to take the initiative on setting up the Project Wonderland software on this machine. However, the issue at this point is paying for the hosting and making sure that the machine is accessible to those of us that want to help that are not Sun employees. It would cost $$$ to host this on the java.net site and budgets at Sun are tight right now. Even if hosting it on an internal Sun network could be done in such a way that we could still have access, it would require $$$ from somewhere for the IT support costs to install and maintain that system on Sun's internal networks. =( Rather than waiting for a better time in the fiscal year for Sun, there must be some company out there that would like to provide the rack space and IT support for this initiative *now*. If so, please contact me to get the ball rolling. My contact information is on the home page for the Silicon Valley Web JUG.
Helping a high school student get a Sun SPOT from Sun for his school computer club has to be number one. The Java Champions BOF was pretty interesting. I wonder how many people know you don't have to be a Java Champion to attend this BOF. Bob Brewin, the Sun CTO, was taking questions from the Java Champions for the first half of this session. I was also fortunate to receive an invite to attend the NLJUG meeting with James Gosling at noon. On the party front, The Eclipse party at the Thirsty Bear was my favorite. However, I only attended 3 of the many parties going on that night. =) If you are a developer working on the part of the system that end users interact with, I highly recommend the talk by Ben Galbraith on creating a compelling user experience (TS-6929). I did a fair amount of interaction design work earlier in my career. I found his content spot on with respect to educating user interface developers on what they should learn themselves and what aspects really benefit from the input of a user experience specialist. I stumbled onto an interesting company, Pervasive Software, simply because  they had a novel pen that clips easily to your badge holder and I had lost my pen. In return for the pen, I spent some time at their small booth and was impressed with what I saw. Without writing any special code, they have a solution (Pervasive DataRush) that will transparently take full advantage of multi-core processors for computation intensive tasks. It was pretty cool. There is much more to write about, but, I will have to update this entry later. It is time to start drinking from the JavaOne fire hose for yet another day.

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