OOPSLA III: Monday
Today I joined a tutorial by Brian Goetz and David Holmes on Java 5 concurrency (I also signed them up for an SE Radio interview :-)). The tutorial was really good and systematically introduced the audience to concurrent programming in Java - although there was a lot of stuff that wasn't Java specific at all. I took one thing from the tutorial: today's programming languages are not sufficient for dealing with concurrency. All but the most trivial idioms have to be implemented through more or less intricate behavioural code. Why is this a problem? It is a problem, because this makes things very hard to analyse by tools. We need languages that factor out most of this stuff into declarations (as opposed to implementation code). There have been languages (such as Occam) that did that to some extend. New languages, such as Fortress, aim at reviving this transition. This also gets back to a comment Eric Meijer made at JAOO: We must design languages and runtime systems so that the programs are much more amenable for analysis by tools. In my view, this is especially true for concurrent programs.
Later that day, after lunch, I did an interview with IBM's steffen schaefer for SE Radio about sensor networks and mobile computing. Very interesting - you'll like it when it's online. After that, I spent a while with Arno and Frederic Jouault discussing an upcoming Eclipse TMF project. Then there was a reception (with the usual food and shop talk :-)). After that, Arno and I recorded another interview: Compiler Construction (exemplified by GCC) with Morgan Deters. Finally, the day ended with another set of discussions of various Eclipse Modeling related issues with Jean Bezivin and Frederic.
So all in all a good day - with not too much sessions attended, but a lot of productive work. Looking forward to tomorrow.
By the way, I am not going to write a daily diary for the rest of my life, but I think conference days at OOPSLA are always packed full with interesting things - interesting not just for me, but also for some of you readers, I hope.