From the Founder of JavaLobby and DZone

Rick Ross

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The Great JavaLobby Developer Survey of 1999

The Great JavaLobby Developer Survey of 1999

I'm sure you've often seen articles citing market research reports from high-powered industry analyst groups. Market research is a multibillion-dollar industry in its own right, and major economic and political decisions are often based on the information gleaned from these reports. I'm also sure there have been numerous high-quality reports produced to examine every aspect of Java ­ I've been fortunate enough to have seen a few. The problem is that these reports are usually distributed only to the few decision makers who have the budget to afford the hefty price tags they invariably carry. Sure, you can sometimes read the free one-page summaries released to help promote these studies, but the full reports often cost many thousands of dollars to purchase.

Not Just for Those Who Can Afford to Pay
So many of us in the Java developer community work independently or in small companies that we may never be able to afford this type of industry intelligence, even though it could potentially be invaluable to us. Too much guesswork dominates our decision making as a result, but it doesn't need to be this way. Great market research information and insights about Java technology, the market and trends in the Java developer community should be available to all of us, not just to those who can afford to pay. The JavaLobby is launching a new project to help make sure this is the case ­ The Great JavaLobby Developer Survey of 1999. This new project should be of interest to all of us, and particularly to the vendors who advertise here in Java Developer's Journal!

The idea is simple: we can use our own skills to develop and deploy a worldwide survey on the Internet, and we can collectively benefit from the knowledge we gain. It couldn't be easier. And who better to teach us about the Java developer market if not ourselves? The Internet has made it possible to gather this information economically and distribute the results ­ without the services of those high-powered industry analysts who would gladly separate us from our money, if only we had it. JavaLobby will endeavor to use quality scientific methods to gather useful and statistically valid data ­ and we welcome the help and sponsorship of major Java players to obtain the services of research experts. Most, if not all, of the results obtained from the survey will be both public and free.

Three Steps to Success
Your help is needed to make The Great JavaLobby Developer Survey of 1999 a success, and I hope you'll be ready and willing to get involved. There are several ways you can help, and all of them are easy. First, we'll definitely need you to participate by responding to the survey. It will be online, and you'll probably be hearing about it from a lot of people. Details will certainly be available at the JavaLobby Web site ( Second, we'll also need you to tell your Java friends and colleagues about the survey and ask them to take it as well. Finally, we hope you'll participate in the discussion of the results, which will undoubtedly supply some food for thought and possibly some surprises. Overall, this should be a fantastic opportunity for us, as a worldwide community of developers, to help ourselves!

Great Benefits
There will be great benefits in it for you, too. If we can work together to make this survey a success, you should be able to enjoy a much more focused and detailed "big picture" of the Java market and its shifting trends as a result. You should also be better able to understand how your personal views compare and contrast with those of your Java developer peers around the world. The survey should help you by providing you with better intelligence of your own to help guide your personal career and product planning. It just may give us a glimpse into Java's future. Who knows?

It should be really exciting to follow this survey project as it unfolds, and I hope you'll be there to take part. It will undoubtedly be a learning experience for all of us.

Thanks for reading, and I'll see you here next month!

More Stories By Rick Ross

Rick Ross is the founder of Javalobby ( He is a frequent speaker at Java-related events and a well-known advocate for Java developer interests.

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