Hi. I am Heather. I joined the Java Developer Relations team at Oracle about a year ago. It has been a great joy to rejoin the Java community after many moons, to find Java just as alive now as then, and to work with an top-notch team every day.
My focus is on bringing up the next generation of Java developers. We want aspiring developers to:
- Be INSPIRED with Java as the Art of the Possible.
- Be UNSTOPPABLE with Java as the Art of the Probable.
- Feel CONNECTED to Java’s vibrant, passionate community.
This has been a listening year. I immersed myself in the education community to understand their points of view, their frustrations and friction with teaching Java, their students’ perceptions learning Java, and about key organizations leading the way in support of CS teacher success. There are many learnings that span the developer experience, the learning experience, the community experience, and the perception of Java and its relevance to the student and their future. I’ll mention two.
Key learning 1: We must simplify the very first experience. We want them to love Java from their first “Hello World” and keep choosing Java over time for its power and beauty. The Java team at Oracle is already taking action on this with Paving the Onramp and JEP 445 previewing in JDK 21. We’d love to have your feedback on this and future changes. If you want to do more, please consider contributing to Java to shape the future of the platform.
Key learning 2: Young people need to see examples that are relevant to and that inspire them. This includes human stories from people that look like them and real-world case studies with Java for problems them matter to them. YOU - your stories, your work, and your Java hobby projects - are critical to moving this needle. I’d love to hear from you. I want to collect and amplify these stories within the education community.
I also want to bring you the perspectives of the education community more directly. Knowledge helps us all contribute to positive change for those that follow in our footsteps. To get that started, Jim Grisanzio recently interviewed Professor Isidro on Duke’s Corner. If you get a chance, check that out! We’d love your feedback on how to get these things into your hands in the best way!