Presenting at Red Hat Summit 2012 next week: Accenture & Red Hat collaboration to grow OpenShift skills

I’m presenting at the Red Hat Summit 2012 conference next week, Thursday June 28th @ 2:30pm at Campground 1 – I’m going to be talking about some work we recently did at Accenture in collaboration with Red Hat to grow OpenShift skills at Accenture.

Here’s the details of the session from the link above:

Growing OpenShift Skills within Accenture: The J-Prize Coding Contest

June 15th, 2012
by Accenture team

In Spring 2012, Accenture collaborated with Red Hat to run the “J-Prize Coding Contest” for Accenture Java developers. The focus of the contest was to design and develop a Java application and deploy it to OpenShift, Red Hat’s Platform as a Service (PaaS) offering.

“Cloud-related technologies are rapidly maturing and are increasingly being used by our clients to deliver real value,” said Kevin Hooke, Manager,  Open Source Initiatives Lead for the Accenture Java Development Program. “The contest helped us grow our Java developers’ knowledge and experience with building and deploying applications to the cloud using PaaS offerings such as OpenShift.”

To learn more, attend the Red Hat campground session hosted by Kevin where he will discuss the success of the contest, the benefits gained for Accenture, and he will showcase the four winning applications.

Thursday, July 28 @ 2:30pm: Campground 1 (Room 301, Hynes)

Red Hat Summit 2012 J-Prize session promo article

Location of JPA persistence.xml to auto find entities

I’m working on some example code to show different configuration options and approaches for using Hibernate with JPA. I just noticed that the location of the /META-INF/persistence.xml file is critical to allow Hibernate to auto-locate your annotated entities.

In order for the auto location to work (to avoid having to explicitly list annotated entities in your persistence.xml or hibernate.cfg.xml files), the persistence.xml file must be bundled in the same jar as the entities. If you move the file elsewhere, then the entities are not found, even if they are in the classpath. To workaround this, if you do need to put the persistence.xml file in a different location, use the <mapping> element to explicitly declare the entities.

Eclipse 4.2 Juno UI

I just downloaded the 3.0.0M2 release of the SpringSource Tool Suite, based on Eclipse 4.2 (Juno), and was surprised that the UI has been refreshed with a new look and feel. I’m not too sure if I like it at this point. The previous Eclipse UI was crisp, clear and unobtrusive, while the new UI seems like it’s more cluttered. There’s more adornments around your views, thcker scrollbars and dividers between views… it just seems more clunky.

Anyone else have the same opinion, or is it just me?

Who will buy Microsoft’s Surface tablet?

Microsoft unveiled their Windows 8 powered tablet yesterday, which they will produce and sell themselves. This is a departure from their normal business model, Microsoft typically do not manufacture and sell their own hardware (the XBox and Microsoft branded peripherals like keyboards and mice are the exceptions), so one has to wonder – why a Microsoft tablet, and why now? And why try again? For those that don’t remember, this is probably the third attempt for Microsoft to get in on the tablet game. They had Windows XP Tablet PC Edition in their early 2000s which never went anywhere. There was also Microsoft Courier, an internal research product that Microsoft were working on between 2008 and 2010, but the project was cancelled and it never made it into production.

One can only speculate that they’re feeling the pressure from Apple’s runaway success of the iPad and the numerous other tablet flavors currently on the market. They’ve certainly never managed to get a slice of the smartphone market either, despite trying with the recent Windows Phone, which has only received lukewarm reception.

Is Apple’s talk of the ‘post-PC era’ finally starting to hurt Microsoft? I can only imagine they’re desperate not to be left behind in the coming years where it’s become clearly obvious that the primary computing device for casual computer users is no longer the desktop PC. With the power and convenience that people can carry around in their pockets with their smartphones, the majority of people’s usage of a computing device is no longer sitting at a desk and using a large beige box with a screen, keyboard and mouse attached to it. People want access to their information and services on the go.

So who is going to buy a Microsoft branded tablet? The Apple loyal fan base will buy any product with an Apple logo on it, but the past few years have shown that Apple have cracked the market for the average home user, and have sold mountains of iPhones and iPads to regular home users who may not have necessarily bought a new laptop or new desktop. In that respect, Apple’s talk of the ‘post-PC era’ really has begun – they started it, and they currently own it. I imagine there’s a few Microsoft loyal users who will feel more comfortable with a Microsoft product, because ‘its what they’re used to’. I still hear people who seem afraid to buy or use an Apple product because ‘it’s different’, and maybe Microsoft can cash in on this dwindling user base. Either way, I think Microsoft must be feeling it’s a now or never time to make a big entry into the tablet space. They’ve tried before and failed, but Apple is showing they can make it work. If Apple can make it work, then Microsoft must be thinking they need to get into the game otherwise they’re going to be left behind as providers of software for devices that no-one uses anymore….