The first very good news of JavaPolis is that since the 9th of december, the Thalys train (from Paris to Antwerp) stops at the central train station, in the heart of the city. Before, the station was quite far from the city. I arrived with David at 5:30pm, we quickly ran to the hotel to checkin, and then we took a taxi to JavaPolis. There we met the JUG Leaders and off we went to a brewery in the town center.
The idea of this diner was to have JUG leaders (and speakers) in the same room to exchange. And that‘s what I did. I talked to a lot of people (some I don‘t even know their names, sorry) about running a Java User Group. Bruno Bussola from JUG Torino gave me some good tips on how to get some sponsors. Paris Apostolopoulos, from the Java Hellenic User Group in Athens, is quite a character. He is full of energy and told us how he always kept faithful in creating his JUG, even when the times were tough (meetings with only a few friends…).
Later, Stephan Janssen (BeJUG) came to me and said “I‘m tryin to get James Gosling coming to Europe. I‘ve sent the Italians and Greeks to convice him to come, go, talk to him, and tell him to come”. So I did. I spent 10 minutes on a one on one talking to James Gosling (hope someone took a photo of that ;o) I remember a couple of years ago at a Sun meeting James was saying that he had 9 years of French classes but he can‘t actually speak French. Among other things we talk about that. He said that the problem in Canada is that French-Canadian and French-Parisian teachers hate each other. Some say “Hot Dog“ and some “Chien Chaud”. But no, James didn‘t tell me if he was moving to Europe or not ;o)
And then I spent the evening talking to Alexis Moussine-Pouchkine, Emmanuel Bernard (he gave me some interesting hints about the future of JSR 303), Gael Blondelle (CTO of EBM WebSourcing founder of Petals), Ludovic Champenois, Francois Orsini (from JavaDB), Mike Van Riper (the guy behind the JUG Map), the Developper.com team (Vincent Braband, Eric Siber, Christophe), Petar Tachchiev from the Bulgarian JUG whom I missed in Paris a few weeks ago (massive stricks all over the country, we could get together), Aaron Houston (from the JUG program)… and many more.
Oh, I also took a photo of Erich Gamma and James Gosling but I forgot my cable to transfer photos to my laptop. I‘ll do that later.
Ok, here I am in the conference room of the first keynote (Stephan and James Gosling will be talking soon). Stay tuned, more to come on this blog.