This year, I was lucky enough to attend both Javaone and Devoxx a month later. It was a very interesting comparison. In particular, I noticed:-
1. Choreography. Javaone is run by Oracle and there is a carefully managed presentation of the World as Oracle would like to see it. So if you are interested in mobile platforms, JavaME is the solution (Android, what’s that?).
Devoxx is very well organised technically but nothing is off bounds for discussion. The Devoxx keynote consisted of giving representatives from Oracle, Microsoft and Google (whose representatives graciously participated and deftly fielded the banana skins). First question ‘who is going to sort out the legal mess with Android?’
2. Keynotes talks. The keynotes (IMHO) were much better at Devoxx. There were no extended ‘advertising slots’ from major sponsors. Javaone has the big announcements (and it was lots of good news this year) and is still pretty much the target for major announcements.
3. Speakers. The speakers are at both are first rate but Devoxx has a wider selection (people from Google no longer go to Javaone which is a real shame). You can catch-up on both at parleys.com
4. Conferences are still important. You can watch many of the talks from Devoxx and Javaone at Parleys.com but you will be missing out. There is no substitute for being there. There is a tremendous buzz from being surrounded by lots of other developers and being able to participate in all the conversations. I am always amazed at how much of a productivity boost (and how many new ideas) I get from getting out of the office for a week.
5. Choosing between Devoxx and Javaone. Both conferences are worth attending. Devoxx is in Belgium and Javaone is in San Francisco. If you can only go to one, attend the nearest to you. If you are at all able to attend both, then you will benefit from the experience.
If you went to Devoxx and Javaone, what did you think?
If you want more information on JavaOne and further coverage of the entire event check out our JavaOne Series Index, which covers everything that is happening and is constantly updated, keep checking back for new info!