A Subjective Guide to GeeCON 2016

GeeCON 2016, a well-established event on the Polish dev scene, is coming up soon (11-13 May, book fast as the tickets get significantly more expensive later). As usual, the subject drew some interest at Espeo, so our team (the A-Team!) of developers driven by hunger for knowledge is heading there to take a look at the newest trends in the Java world. I am, of course, a member of that A-team and this is my personal list of things to see this year.

It’s no surprise that there’s still a big focus on microservices as the hype around them is still on the rise. But this year, emotions at GeeCON 2016 are likely to be more balanced. There are going to be many talks along the lines of “microservices ARE great, but beware of this, that and that before rushing in”. This means the world of microservices is getting mature. I’m really looking forward to listening to all those cautionary tales and talks about good practices. These will mostly take place during day 1, track 1.

  • Cloud Native Java by Josh Long – “Microservices invite architectural complexity that few are prepared to address. In this talk, we’ll look at how high performance organizations like Ticketmaster, Alibaba, and Netflix make short work of that complexity with Spring Boot and Spring Cloud.”  Josh is currently finishing his book titled “Cloud Native Java: Designing Resilient Systems with Spring Boot, Spring Cloud, and Cloud Foundry”
  • Microservices. Stairway to heaven or highway to hell? by Sander Hoogendoorn – “There’s big promises of scalability and flexibility. However, when you are knee deep in mud as an architect, developer or tester, it’s hard to find out how to get there. Sander Hoogendoorn, independent craftsman and CTO of Klaverblad Insurances, discusses the long and winding road his projects, greenfield and brownfield, have travelled. “
  • MDD: Metrics Driven Development by Sam Elamin – Metrics tend not to get their due attention, but they are very important. “this talk Sam Elamin will relate his real life experience working on a distributed system dealing with £100,000 worth of transactions every hour.” Surely a thing you’d like to monitor well!
  • Microservices tracing with Spring Cloud and Zipkin by Marcin Grzejszczak – expecting a good talk, though not on microservices themselves, but about the tools which simplify the setup of a ‘sane’ ecosystem around them. “It’s already common knowledge that creating distributed systems is not easy. It’s 2016 and it’s time to show how that complexity can be contained. Service Discovery and Registry (Zookeeper / Consul / Eureka), easy request sending with client side load balancing (Feign + Ribbon), request proxying with Zuul.”
  • Building HATEOAS into your API by Eugen Paraschiv – Implementing full HATEOAS seems to be a mundane task that doesn’t quite pay off, so I’ll attend this talk – maybe someone will convince me to think otherwise?
  • Rise of the Machines – Automate Your Development by Sven Peters – They’ve got ‘robots’ for monitoring production servers, updating issues, supporting customers, reviewing code, setting up laptops, doing development reporting, conducting customer feedback — even automating daily standups. In what instances is it useful to automate? In what cases does it not make sense?  I’ve always been a big fan of a higher degree of automation, and Sven proved to be a really entertaining performer during his keynote back in 2013, so I’m definitely going!
  • Beat Aliens with Akka Cluster by Krzysztof Otrębski – implementing a resilient system of missile defence with Scala and Akka on Raspberry Pis seems so absurd that we just have to go there, even if only to see a fun live coding session. BTW, Espeo also used Raspberries for the Escop project.
  • Field Notes of a Command Line Ninja by Rustam Mehmandarov – I was always impressed to see some new tricks in the shell and I often used them after someone showed them to me, but I was always a bit too lazy to get a deeper knowledge on the guts of command lines. So I will be happy to get to know some tricks for Java developers during this talk.

Geecon 2016’s schedule can be viewed right here for reference. Hope to see some of you there – if you can’t make it, we’ll be sure to keep you updated on what’s hot in the dev world right now.