GR8Conf 2013: Torsdag i Danmark

5th Anniversary

Søren Berg Glasius kicked off the first day of the actual conference by welcoming everybody and highlighting the 5th anniversary of the event. A couple of hardcore-devotees where celebrated and presented with free passes for next years’ event before Søren announced the keynote by Dr. Venkat Subramaniam. Having attended the workshop by Venkat the day before, our expectations were high, and boy where they met! In a virtually continuous flow of words, highlighted by a cornucopia of historical persons, Venkat showed us, grounded on his socks, the exact relation between Mahatma Gandhi and Groovy developers.

We sat in on the session where Jeff Beck presented some best practices in static code analysis. The weapons of choice are Codenarc and Cobertura for Groovy and JSLint for JavaScript, while it all comes together in Jenkins, which we have been using for quite some time too.

The incredibly small Cinterion CPU Søren Berg Glasius introducing the 5th anniversary of the Apache Groovy language

Several centuries ago, I started my education in electronics actually, so I could not resist sitting down for Stephen Chin of Oracle showing how he runs Groovy Fx on a Raspberry Pi. Maybe I should just order this Arduino kit I’ve been lurking at for some time now, and start playing around.

Grails ‘foundationalist’ Graeme Rocher presented us with a sneak preview on the things to come in Grails 2.3 and Grails 3.0. Specially the features on REST URL mapping and GORM for REST caught our attention, not in the least because of the console that will present us with a nice overview of the effective URL mapping in an application.

Graeme Rocher, Søren Berg Glasius and  Guillaume Laforge with the anniversary cakes for Grails, GR8Conf and Groovy Cake-break in the atrium of the Copenhagen IT University

Following the keynote show of Dr. Subramaniam this morning, it was no surprise to see the whole auditorium packed for his talk on Functional Programming. Venkat started with a reference ( GOTO is evil!) to famous dutch engineer [Edsger Dijkstra]) and introduced the audience to “Assignment-less programming”. While we do feel a bit sorry for Søren and his crew, we learned from Venkat that all the conference-swag is dirty programming and should be re-engineered:

from: gr8.technologies.each { yourBrain << it }

to: yourBrain << gr8.technologies.collect { it }

Venkat continued by highlighting the typical psychiatric disorders of Java programmers (i.e. self-inflicted-wound-pattern, primitive-obsession, trainwreck-pattern or even the there-is-a-reason-they-invented-copy-and-paste-syndrome). All ended well when we learned how senseless the discussion on lambda expressions versus closures actually is, and how easy imperative style - can be re-engineered to functional style programming. Yet again, a witty and insightful presentation delivered at warp speed.

Ready, Steady, Transform presented the experiences of a software team learning and building a framework for manipulation of data with a groovy DSL. Learning sprint-by-sprint in the realm of investment bankers and financial traders where typos tend to cost serious amount of money.

To finish today’s report loosely quoting Ghandi: ‘Code as if you were to die tomorrow. Learn as if you were to code forever.’