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February 17, 2012

Jfokus 2012 Recap

February 17, 2012

by Jonas Bonér

I'm just back from an exciting few days with the Typesafe team at Jfokus 2012. Jfokus is a conference that rapidly is becoming one of the best developer conferences in Europe. This year was no exception: high energy, great speakers and well produced. 

Typesafe had a booth where the Akka Team together with Peter Hilton from the Play framework community project were hanging around answering questions about Scala, Akka and Play. The two big announcements were that we released Akka 2.0-RC1 and Play 2.0-RC1 on the first conference day. This was great fun and created some buzz around the conference floor.

Scala, Akka and Play were well represented in the conference agenda.

The first day of pre-conference university track workshops started with Peter Lundberg from Valtech delivering a fully booked hands-on half-day workshop on Getting started with Play! framework for web development in Java and Scala.

The actual conference opened with a keynote by Juergen Hoeller from SpringSource on Enterprise Java in 2012 an Beyond in which Juergen talked about Akka and stated Scala as the “next-generation language on the JVM”. That was directly followed by a great talk on Play 2.0 by Peter Hilton, speaking in front of a packed room of developers.

Play-jfokus

Matt Raible did a nice writeup of the talk on his blog.

Day two started with Matt himself doing a replay of his highly appreciated Devoxx 2011 talk on HTML 5 with Play Scala, Coffeescript and Jade. Once again he did a great performance and got rave reviews. Read more about the talk on Matt’s blog. The Play talk was directly followed by Akka’s Tech Lead Viktor Klang of Typesafe presenting Up and Out: Scaling Sofware with Actors in front of a fully packed room of enthusiastic developers.

Akka-jfokus

His talk was very well received. One interesting thing to note was that when Viktor asked the audience how many had heard about Akka, almost everyone in the room raised their arms, and when he asked how many had used Scala, almost half of the audience did.

At the same time, in another room, Heroku’s James Ward did a talk on how to using Git to deploy Play applications to the Cloud using Heroku. James Ward’s talk was followed by James Strachan from FuseSource who presented his Scalate - Scala Templating Engine project.

By the end of the second day Typesafe’s Heiko Seeberger did a very well received, bold, almost exclusively live-coding session on how to get started with Scala titled Scala in Action, followed by a short “lightning” session by Thomas Alexandre from DevCode on the productivity boost Scala can give you titled One-liners are Your Friend: Increasing Productivity with Scala.

In total 8 conference talks on Scala, Play and Akka. Great fun.

The conference ended with myself and Peter Hilton doing a live stage interview for Oracle’s JavaSpotlight podcast, discussing the integration work between Play and Akka that the teams have done to allow Play to be fully asynchronous and non-blocking and giving Akka users a slick thin HTTP DSL module through the Play-Mini module, and much more. The result of this collaboration will be released in the next few weeks.

In short, Jfokus 2012 included lots of fun and energy for Typesafe and the Scala, Akka and Play communities. Don’t miss next year’s Jfokus conference, or for that sake the upcoming Scala Days conference in London.

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