Java Feature Story—Cloud Computing

Java Software

Java and the Cloud

By Caroline Kvitka


New Ways To Build and Deploy Java Applications

Java developers are gaining new capabilities and greater flexibility in how they build and deploy applications in the cloud. In much the same way that software as a service has revolutionized how business users access applications, Java in the cloud promises to simplify Java development, with huge implications for how Java applications are deployed and accessed.

At the upcoming Oracle OpenWorld 2014 and JavaOne 2014 conferences in San Francisco, California—running from September 28 to October 2—attendees will hear about the latest developments on this front, including new capabilities coming from Oracle. The events will include dozens of sessions on the latest Java advances; keynotes by Thomas Kurian, Cameron Purdy, and other Java influencers; and news announcements from Oracle and others in the Java community.

In this interview, Mike Lehmann, vice president of product management for Oracle Cloud Application Foundation at Oracle, gives a preview of what's on tap for Java aficionados at Oracle OpenWorld and JavaOne.*

What is the role of Java in Oracle's cloud strategy?

What is very clear in the world of cloud is that a large majority of customers who are doing anything in the cloud are using Java. It is a hugely productive programming language, with a large variety of frameworks associated with it and great server-side standards with Java EE.

As far as what Oracle is doing with Java and the cloud, Oracle WebLogic Server is the core to our cloud infrastructure. It is Java EE 6–compliant—and at Oracle OpenWorld, we'll talk about our new Java EE 7 capabilities, as well as our certification on Java SE 8.

We have solutions for customers building on-premises private clouds. We have Oracle Cloud, where Oracle WebLogic Server and Oracle Coherence, our in-memory data grid, form a foundational infrastructure for anyone wanting to deploy Java applications in the cloud. So there's a lot going on that makes Java the perfect language for developing cloud applications.

What are some of the other major cloud messages that we're going to be hearing at Oracle OpenWorld and JavaOne?

Some of the biggest things that you're going to hear about are what’s next in Oracle cloud infrastructure for IaaS [infrastructure as a service], PaaS [platform as a service], and SaaS [software as a service]. In my area, we are rolling out a full new set of capabilities for Oracle Java Cloud Service. It has a whole new set of cloud tools around building, deploying, and managing large-scale Java applications. This is going to change how our customers think about building and deploying applications, because it is the same software and infrastructure on-premises and in the cloud.

Thousands of Java developers will be in San Francisco for these events. What's in store for them?

In addition to a significantly updated Oracle Java Cloud Service, there will be the new Oracle Developer Cloud Service, a fully automated development lifecycle solution in the cloud. What's very cool about it is how tightly integrated it is with Oracle Java Cloud Service. So as a developer, I can come in and say, "I'm going to start a new project, and I'd like to write some code for an application." I will check it into my build system, manage all my dependencies, and collaborate with my team with the issue tracking and the collaboration wiki tools. For my test and QA, I actually will integrate in and do test and QA with Oracle Java Cloud Service, which would be the deployment and the runtime environment. This is the way modern development will be done, and we see a lot of customers trying to do this on-premises. What we're bringing is the ability to do it in a cloud and have it fully automated for you.

Of course, many business and technology executives will be in attendance, too. How does all that's happening with Java affect enterprise IT strategy from their perspective?

We are the first company building a cloud solution that is the same in the cloud as it is on-premises. You're able to literally take an on-premises workload that you were running and move it to the cloud. Why does that matter to a CIO or a CEO? The value proposition here for the CEO is that I have a lot more flexibility in how I'm going to invest for my business-critical workloads. Do I want to spend on a data center for running that business workload on premises? Or do I want to have Oracle own the data center and I'll run my business workload in the cloud? So it becomes much more of a business decision of what is the right thing for my organization to do. The technical decision is equally simple—it is the same software and infrastructure technically, and the real question for the CIO is, "What service level, security, or control do I want over my infrastructure?" The decision matrix is dramatically simplified.

What are some highlights of the cloud tracks at Oracle OpenWorld and JavaOne?

At the JavaOne strategy keynote, we'll give an update on where we are with GlassFish Server Open Source Edition, the Java EE 7 Reference Implementation, the adoption of Java EE 7, and the steps we're taking around Java EE 8. You'll also hear from practitioners who are doing really innovative, interesting new things in the cloud.

At Oracle OpenWorld, Thomas Kurian's keynote is one not to miss. He will lay out a very broad encompassing architecture and vision of where Oracle is driving both the on-premises cloud vision and supporting products, as well as what we are running today in the cloud that you can make immediate use of as well as the roadmap of where we are going.

What can people get out of Oracle OpenWorld and JavaOne besides the keynotes, sessions, and labs?

As an attendee, as you walk through the halls of JavaOne and Oracle OpenWorld there literally are well-known, "name brand" industry gurus everywhere. It is a meeting point and idea exchange of some of the industry's top talent. Some of the most satisfying moments for me are when I'm walking down the hallway and I run into someone who says, "I wouldn't mind talking to you about something." Those discussions, which always go in directions you never can anticipate, tend to be the moments you remember. It's always great to hear stories and have that ongoing conversation.