Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Some form of closure?

Some of you may know that in the 9/11 attacks, I lost a friend, Ed Felt, on United 93. Ed had been traveling to San Francisco on business. I obviouslty feel bad enough about the attacks, but to also lose a friend drives it home much more. Plus, and this is something I've never really shouted about (for obvious reasons), I was meant to be on that flight! The only reason I canceled was because I'd just got married and had promised my wife I'd not travel out of the country for 6 months after the wedding.

So you can probably understand why it was with some trepidation that I finally watched the United 93 movie. I deliberately took a while to buy it on DVD and I've never watched it on TV. But last night I decided to bite the bullet and sit down to watch it alone. I've read reports and seen documentaries over the years about the whole event, but this movie was good in showing the utter chaos and confusion that was going on at the time. The scenes on the plane itself were the hardest: I fly a lot and could empathise with the passengers just from that perspective, but when I considered that I could have been there ...

I'm not sure if I'll ever watch the film again. I don't think I have to in order to understand what Ed's family and those of the other victims, are still going through today. I'm one of the lucky ones, but this is something that will always stay with me.

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Woo Hoo!!

Some good news. I don't think I have to do an acceptance speech, but I'm really glad to be on the team. SCA is definitely an important industry standard in the making.

Friday, May 11, 2007

Wonderland and JavaOne

Probably the best presentation I saw at JavaOne was left to last. James Gosling previewed Wonderland. At first I thought this was just yet another Second Life, avatar-based demonstration. However, when they started showing the avatars working within the virtual world with the same programs (Firefox, OpenOffice, etc.) as you'd use in the real world, it took on a completely new importance. This was very cool. Being able to create rooms where you could display your code dynamically and updateable (on "glass" walls, no les ;-) as though you were in a physical equivalent, show presentations, have true meetings where (almost) everything you'd want to do if you were face-to-face could be done, is a significant step forwards. Nice.

JavaOne 2007

I'm at JavaOne once again, to give a couple of BOFS (one on transaction bridging with the other members of the JBossTS team and one on JBI 2.0. Over all I haven't been as impressed with the conference this year as in previous years, but maybe I've just chosen to go to the wrong presentations and BOFs. Plus, why why why why why can't Sun manage to set up a decent wireless network for the conference? For a company who used to talk about The Network is the Computer, they do a pretty bad job of it year on year!