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May 15, 2005

The AspectJ Roadshow

I've been out and about this last couple of weeks: Lancaster, Boston, London and Frankfurt - all very different and all good fun.

At Lancaster I got to do a chalk-and-talk on AspectJ 5 with the AOSD group there. It was nice to spend some time with a group who are up to speed on the latest developments in the field - it meant that I could give a talk using no slides at all and we just followed wherever the interest took us. The @AspectJ style, XML support, and generics were the order of the day. Every spare second I was working on the AspectJ compiler (integrating the latest JDT compiler once more). My favourite quote of the visit came from Awais Rashid:

"You're obsessed"

(said to me after I nailed another bug in the break before the meeting). I took is as a compliment. I think you have to be obsessed to keep a project like AspectJ driving strongly forward.

Last time I wrote about upgrading the JDT compiler inside AspectJ, several of you asked why we didn't use aspects to help with the integration. At that time I didn't want to make two big changes at once (upgrading to Java 5 for the first time, and switching the integration mechanism). This time around I did start using aspects (on the plane on the way to Boston) and I plan to put a whole lot more in place. It should make subsequent integrations much easier to do.

I can't say too much about Boston - I was doing AspectJ/AOP consulting there for a large corporation. It's great to introduce new ideas to teams within an organisation and see them fly with them. My favourite quote from that visit was:

"I've had the team downloading all the samples and trying some things out for the last two weeks in preparation for your visit so that we could work out what detailed questions to ask - but everything we've tried just worked first time." :)

Onto London then - this was just a day trip (London's not far for me). Something quite different here, I underwent "media training" - how to talk to the press etc.. The course was run by an ex-journalist and was very useful. Apparently the british press are some of the worst in the world for aggressive tactics and the veracity of what they publish. The American press are much, much better - because if they get it wrong they get sued! Anyway, I now know what to do if a journalist says to me "So would you say....?".

Didn't take long before I had to put that training into practice - I did a couple of interviews last week for German publications as part of the JAX conference. JAX (Frankfurt) was the venue for my last trip -I was a keynote speaker there. I found out that the advantage of doing a keynote is that everyone comes to listen (no other sessions in parallel), but the disadvantage was you get 30 minutes less that a regular slot (so I had 45 minutes). It was a great audience - I heard there were around 1,000 people at the conference - and some good questions. One of the interviews I did was with the editor of Java magazin and eclipse magazin. That's right, Germany has a dedicated Eclipse magazine, the first in the world afaik. I've got a copy of it and it looks great, some really good coverage (bear in mind that I can't read German though!). There's a good piece on AOP with AspectJ - plenty of screenshots and a good few pages of coverage, and on the cover CD you get AJDT 1.1.12, AspectJ 1.5.0 M2 and AspectWerkz 2.0. Let's hope they start publishing a version in English soon too!

Posted by adrian at May 15, 2005 08:07 PM [permalink]


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