Sunday, August 12, 2007

What I did this weekend..

I'm just back from a great weekend in Tønsberg! We've got this inner circle in our Java department called (duh) Core Java, and every once in a while we pack up, head for some desolate place and nerd away for the entire weekend. This was another weekend like that (although Tønsberg is not as desolate as I had expected, more of a classic south-of-Norway town with great clubs and people). We stayed at the hotel by the water side, not the greatest view but good since I haven't been around the ocean half as much as I would've like this summer (bad weather in Norway this year).

So, we got checked in on friday and fiddled around with AOP, our man Sergei gave us a taste of what he's going to present at JavaZone this year. Don't miss it. After that we headed out for beer, gin and tonic.

Day two included a presentation of Spring's Java Config which was followed by an interesting discussion on Spring, Guice and testability of Java configured modules. We had a session on JavaSpaces followed by some hands-on coding, and then we headed out for some water-activities, wake boarding, skiing and sea-rafting. It's was quite an experience to feel your eyelids nearly being peeled off by wind resistance, doing near 70 knots (130 km/h) skipping along the waves. Then we sat around the campfire exchanging stories and discussing JavaFX and who should feature as the next James Bond till midnight, and headed into town (by boat) for some more latenight activities :)

Sunday we focused on search technologies in Java, featuring Lucene, Nutch and Solr, as well as Google. Hugely interesting discussion followed.

The biggest astonishment I've got from this week, counting both the training earlier on, and this workshop, is the level of the new guys. One of them, just for the heck of it, implemented a ray-trace renderer that utilized a JavaSpace for job scheduling on parallell processors and presented a fully functional demo on sunday. And he did it while the rest of us were sleeping! I'm really looking forward to see their progress in the coming year (I might do a post later on how the two-day-training session went).

All in all a great weekend. Learned a lot and had a great time with the colleagues. Happenings like these are a big part of what makes Objectware a great place to work. We all share that same enthusiasm for the stuff we do, and we don't mind spending a weekend together mixing skill development with social activities.