Thursday, March 19, 2009

Suggestions for Grails Refcard?

You may recall a recent poll on DZone where they were looking for input on what to cover next in their Refcardz project. Grails ended up at the top of that poll, by a very healthy margin (roughly 50% more votes than the #2 choice: Maven). The folks at DZone actually listen to their customers (unlike some other companies we know) and are now working on a Grails Refcard!

I have several of these cards and they are a great resource. I am very excited to see that their will soon be one on Grails! (Hopefully this May.) I'm also pretty excited that I get to write it. But these are a community resource so I am hoping to get some community involvement.

So, what would you most like to see in a Grails Refcard? What kind of things would you turn to a cheat sheet for when you're working on a Grails application? Are there features or syntax that you find yourself Googling for often? Now's your chance to get those covered on this handy reference card.

Post your wish list in a comment here or on the Grails mailing list.

Thanks for your help!

Sunday, March 1, 2009

Thoughts on Groovy, Grails, Griffon and JavaOne

You may have already heard that Groovy, Grails and Griffon are going to be under-represented at this year's JavaOne. While this is a bummer and hard to understand in the face of the enthusiasm that continues to grow in the community (see below for some examples), I don't think the right reaction is to say "who needs them" and skip JavaOne altogether. One idea Graeme Rocher mentioned on Twitter is a good one: a G3 mini conference would be great! The Monday night before JavaOne kicks off would be a perfect time for that.

Anyhow, it's important to note that last year there weren't all that many Groovy related talks either, but what I observed was that Groovy was represented as much by excited attendees as by presenters. I think it can be the same this year. Some of the brightest minds in the G3 community will be at JavaOne and they will have many opportunities outside of the session rooms, to talk about and demonstrate the power, efficiency and fun of Groovy, Grails and Griffon. The rest of us can do the same. So if you can make it to JavaOne go for it and feel the Groovy in the air!

Speaking of enthusiasm in the community, here are a few examples:

Here's a screenshot of the DZone popular link tab for 3/01/2008

This is one of my favorites, from a Sun blog.

This one is from the Stephen Colbourne's blog and shows the results of a whiteboard poll at Devoxx, a European conference that is very similar to JavaOne.

So don't be discouraged- the better mousetrap is doing all right!

Must See Lizard Brain Web Design

It's the morning of the last day of the first NFJS of 2009 and as I wait for things to get hopping, I had to mention that if you get a chance at a NoFluff event or elsewhere, you've got to see Scott Davis' talk titled Lizard Brain Web Design. If you are involved in web development this session will give you some great insight and ideas as to how to make your users happy that they went to your site. If you're not involved in web development, go see it anyway cause it's just plain fun!

Scott also gave a new talk called Dim Sum Grails. This was about as thorough a trip through Grails land as you could possibly fit into 90 minutes.

Brian Goetz, who I've heard has to bring an extra suitcase to carry his brains, gave a very helpful talk on Java Concurrency. He gave so many tips that it would be difficult to not pickup a few nuggets you can use right away. While Brian is not quite as dynamic a speaker as Scott, he is a good teacher and is able to get complex ideas across to the audience.

The day was capped off with the BOFs. I went to the JVM languages BOF and it was interesting but not quite as lively as they had been in the past. The discussion turned more towards functional languages and they just don't seem to get people quite as excited as dynamic languages. That or maybe we were all just to brain-full to get excited about anything.

Anyhow, it's been great so far and there's one more day to go. Today we'll hear more from Brian Goetz and Neal Ford, and Venkat Subramaniam, along with Stu Halloway. Good stuff in Milwaukee - stay up to date with the NoFluff news on Twitter. Search for #nfjs