The Top Scoring Devoxx 2016 Presentations

Devoxx Belgium 2016
Devoxx Belgium 2016

This time not a book list, but something different which might still appeal to most developers. Devoxx is one of the biggest independent Java related events in Europe, and possibly in the world. Devoxx is a multi day conference, and every year, a crowd of thousands of Java developers come together to connect, learn about the latest technologies, and generally have a great time in Antwerp, one of Belgium’s most interesting cities. Besides presentations, Devoxx also contains University sessions, which a are deep dives into specific tools or technologies. Each year, more than a 100 sessions are held, and it’s easy to miss out on the top ones. Luckily, all the sessions are recorded and provided free of charge by the Devoxx organisation. So use your time effectively, we’ve listed the top sessions below, courtesy of Devoxx, for you to enjoy!

Top Devoxx Sessions:

  • Flying services with the drone (Rated 4.84) by K.Kudrynski, B.Kubiak
    A drone, a PC and a lot of patience. These are all the ingredients you need to start your adventure in the emerging world of flying services. We, as fanatic real-time strategy gamers, wanted our drone to listen to our commands given at the map level, revealing the terrain below it as it flies and creating a coherent and smooth map.
  • Declarative Thinking, Declarative Practice (Rated 4.72) by K.Henney
    Do this, do that. Coding from assembler to shell scripting, from the mainstream languages of the last century to the mainstream languages now, is dominated by an imperative style. From how we teach variables — they vary, right? — to how we talk about databases, we are constantly looking at state as a thing to be changed and programming languages are structured in terms of the mechanics of change — assignment, loops and how code can be threaded (cautiously) with concurrency.
  • Make CSS Fun Again with Flexbox! (Rated 4.71) by H.Sablonnière
    If you think CSS is too complicated and that vertically centering an element is a huge achievement, this session is for you.
    Flexbox is a universally supported W3C specification which brings a new approach to layout in CSS. No more dirty hacks!
  • Reactive Programming (Rated 4.7) by V.Subramaniam
    Reactive Programming is receiving quite a bit of attention and for good reasons. It’s a nice logical next step from functional programming. It takes the concept of function composition and lazy evaluations to the next level. It streamlines handling of many critical issues that are architectural in nature: resilience, scale, responsiveness, and messaging. In this session, we will start with a quick introduction to reactive programming. We will then dive into code examples and learn how to create reactive applications. We’ll learn to implement observables, to deal with errors in a graceful manner, learn both synchronous and asynchronous solutions, hot vs. cold observables, and dealing with backpressures.
  • Twelve Ways to Make Code Suck Less Conf 4.68 with 291 votes by V.Subramaniam
    We all have seen our share of bad code and some really good code as well. What are some of the common anti patterns that seem to be recurring over and over in code that sucks? By learning about these code smells and avoiding them, we can greatly help make our code better.
  • How Google DeepMind conquered the game of Go (Rated 4.55) by R.van Rijn
    Google’s AlphaGo is an extraordinary breakthrough for Artificial Intelligence. The game of 19×19 Go has 1.74×10^172 unique positions and is about a ‘googol’ times harder to calculate than chess. Experts thought it would take at least another decade before AI would be able to beat the best human players. So how did Google tackle this problem? What algorithms did they use and how do they work?
  • Refactoring to Java 8 (Rated 4.54) by T.Gee
    While we’re drawing ever closer to Java 9, and even hearing about features in Java 10, it’s also true that many of us are still working with an older version. Even if your project has technically adopted Java 8, and even if you’re using it when coding new features, it’s likely the majority of your code base is still not making the most of what’s available in Java 8 – features like Lambda Expressions, the Streams API, and new Date/Time.
  • Continuous Delivery At GitHub (Rated 4.52) by A.Hélaïli
    On a daily basis, GitHub’s developers push about 80 different changes to the production platform. Alain Helaili will walk you through the workflow and tools used to achieve this, and introduce you to the hardest working employee of the company, Hubot.
  • Java Language and Platform Futures: A Sneak Peek (Rated 4.52) by B.Goetz
    Want to see where the Java Language is going? In this session, Java Language Architect Brian Goetz offers a sneak peek at some of the features currently under exploration for future versions of Java.
  • Modular monoliths (Rated 4.46) by S.Brown
    If you want evidence that the software development industry is susceptible to fashion, just go and take a look at all of the hype around microservices. It’s everywhere! For some people microservices is “the next big thing”, whereas for others it’s simply a lightweight evolution of the big service-oriented architectures that we saw 10 years ago “done right”. Microservices is by no means a silver bullet though, and the design thinking required to create a good microservices architecture is the same as that needed to create a well structured monolith. And this begs the question that if you can’t build a well-structured monolith, what makes you think microservices is the answer?
  • Java EE, TypeScript and Angular2 (Rated 4.4) by A.Goncalves, S.Pertus
    This University is targeted at Java developers who want to discover TypeScript and how to use an Angular2 front-end with a Java back-end. It will be divided into three parts. 1) Develop Java EE micro-services using WildFly Swarm. 2) Discover the language TypeScript. 3) Create an Angular2 web interface using TypeScript to interact with the REST back-end.
  • Machine Learning for Developers (Rated 4.4) by D.Poccia, S.Stormacq
    Have you always wanted to add predictive capabilities or voice recognition to your application, but haven’t been able to find the time or the right technology to get started? Everybody wants to build smart apps, but only a few are Data Scientists. We had the same issue inside Amazon, so we created a Machine Learning engine that Developers can easily use. The same approach is now available in the AWS cloud. And we introduced Amazon Alexa to build engaging voice experiences for your services and devices: if you are a device maker, and your connected product has a microphone and a speaker, the Alexa Voice Service (AVS) enables you to add voice-powered experiences to your connected devices. And you can also use the Alexa Skills Kit (ASK) to teach new skills to Alexa!
  • Optional – The Mother of All Bikesheds (Rated 4.39) by S.Marks
    The Optional class was introduced in Java 8 in order to solve a narrow but frequently occurring problem: what to return if you have nothing to return. It is a single class with less than 20 methods, but it turns out to have been one of the most controversial and most misunderstood APIs, having generated several “centithreads” of discussion on OpenJDK mailing lists. Indeed, Brian Goetz (Oracle’s Java Language and Libraries Architect) has mentioned that one aspect of Optional was his biggest mistake in Java 8. Optional is also one of the more widely misused APIs. A brief survey of OpenJDK code revealed several embarrassing examples of Optional usage, and expert Java programmers have admitted to not making the most of this API.

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