With next week being my 12th time at JavaOne, here’s some wisdom for those who’ve never been.
- Use the schedule builder. Many sessions fill up early and if you didn’t reserve your seat you’ll be stuck in overflow.
- Don’t miss the Oracle Appreciation Event. It’s one of the hottest attractions in San Francisco. Event bracelets are highly sought after and traded by the locals on the free market. I recommend leaving well in advance of the encores to avoid the long queues that gather for the return bus trip.
- Enjoy a brew at the Thirsty Bear a block from the Moscone center. You’ll be glad you did. And don’t skip the tapas.
- Attend the BOFS. More casual (and fun) than the event keynotes or technical sessions. BOFs are a great way to meet the leading minds working with Java. The relaxed format encourages audience participation and are a way for your voice to be heard.
- Trouble reserving a room within your price range nearby? Try renting an Airbnb apartment. Often times apartments may be rented for a fraction of the cost you would otherwise pay for a hotel room.
- Take the BART. No need to rent that car or pay $40 in cab fare. BART has terminals at both local airports, is fast, easy and cheap.
- Get out and walk a bit. Market Street (shopping), Union Square (more shopping), and China Town (eating and sightseeing) is walking distance from the conference hotels. Better yet, stop by the Embarcadero for a ride on one of the ferries shuttling commuters across the bay.
If you’re lucky you might snag a bar seat at the Slanted Door which is one of the best restaurants in town.
Need a laugh? Check out Pier 39’s Sea Lions at the Wharf.
- Stay until Friday. Avoid the mad rush to the airport on Thursday afternoon. The conference pace slows to a crawl which is nice after all the earlier hustle and bustle. There’s usually plenty of free beer left as Oracle tries to drain the last of the kegs.